By Catching Pigeons
Last Updated: 04/07/14 3:46pm
Our gossip column is back with all the whispers ahead of the weekend action and from the Newmarket gallops.
Belle D'Or can eclipse the more experienced Queen Catrine and win the listed Coral Distaff for John Gosden at Sandown on Saturday.
There was plenty of stable confidence behind the daughter of Medaglia d’Oro on her debut, and there were some long faces at Clarehaven when she was beaten by 40-1 stablemate Swift Campaign.
Connections put that defeat down to greenness and she duly made no mistake on her only subsequent start, running away with a maiden at Salisbury by over four lengths. She has impressed in her work since and connections rate her highly.
Steps can enjoy a change of luck and beat the likely favourite Stepper Point in the Group Three Coral Charge. Little has gone right for Roger Varian's six year old on his last two outings at Epsom and Royal Ascot.
He could not deliver his challenge after being hampered in the Dash on Derby day and then lost vital ground at the start behind Sole Power in the King's Stand 18 days ago. That leaves him with a bit to find with Stepper Point, but his stable are in great nick at present and given a trouble-free passage, he has the ability to turn the form around.
Brian Meehan has his team in good heart after a very quiet first half of the season and Mawfoor should go well at a big price in the Gary Tuck Memorial Handicap. He has run in very competitive handicaps at Haydock and Royal Ascot on his last two starts and will be suited by this much smaller field and return to seven furlongs. The fitting of a hood for the first time should also aid his cause. Extremity rates a danger from a Hugo Palmer looking to click up a gear in the coming weeks.
Raise Your Gaze should go well for Clive Cox in the Download The Coral App Handicap. The three- year-old has been knocking on the door on his last two starts and looked a shade unlucky over course and distance last month when he found trouble in running and escaped when all too late. He seems to be progressing and looks the value each-way bet against the joint top-weights Gothic and Prince of Stars.
Hughie Morrison will be mad keen to beat Domination in the Listed Coral Marathon and he could well be up to the task if there is a bit of cut in the ground. The East Ilsley trainer had to play second fiddle to Domination when he beat Another Cocktail in the Ascot Stakes at the Royal meeting last month and it must have proved a rather bitter pill to swallow.
Not only did he formerly train the winner, the owner of the runner up, Michael Kerr-Dineen bred him as well! There is unfinished business here, and in Nearly Caught, Morrison has a progressive stayer with the ability to win at this level.
Quiz Mistress should also go well for the same trainer in the bet365 Old Newton Cup at Haydock. She returned to something like her best form when beaten just over a length by Sultanina - one of the leading fancies for the Group Two Lancashire Oaks on this card - in a pattern event on this course last month, and has pleased at home since.
The ground and course look sure to suit, and she has sneaked into this handicap on quite a reasonable mark judged on the pick of her form.
Magic Hurricane looks to hold a very solid each-way chance for James Fanshawe, as does the same trainer’s Seal Of Approval in the bet365 Lancashire Oaks. She went well under big-race pilot Hayley Turner in a spin with Ribbons this week.
Tanqeya can make it two wins from three starts in the Pentagon Vauxhall Handicap at Nottingham. The winner of her only start as a juvenile at Lingfield, she looked a stayer in the making when chasing home Crowley's Law on her comeback at Haydock last month. She tackles an extra two furlongs here and she is expected to go one better.
Noel Fehily returns from an eight week injury lay-off on Almost Gemini in the Newton Abbot Racecourse Handicap Hurdle on Monday. His old mate and guv'nor Charlie Mann has the gelding well primed for the comeback and hopes are high that he can give the Lambourn-based jockey, who hit a career high of 127 winners last term, a belated first winner of the 2014-15 campaign.
On the same day Ryan Moore looks a significant booking for Jeremy Noseda’s Red Velour in the Betdaq 0% World Cup Nil-Nil Results Handicap at Windsor. The trainer looks to be emerging from a spell in the doldrums and this colt has the ability to be competitive off a mark of 72.
In Newmarket leading Darley July Cup fancy Aljamaaheer went past his galloping companion in a piece of work under Paul Hanagan in the week while Angel’s Vision and Dartmouth are two Sir Michael Stoute-trained juveniles who continue to take the eye.