Alex Hammond Blog!
Last Updated: 29/08/19 9:05am
Alex Hammond is backing Battaash's trainer Charlie Hills to bag this weekend's big sprint at Beverley in her latest blog
What a week we had at York, but you're only allowed one favourite moment - what was it?!
York is a fabulous racecourse and the meeting this year was taken to a whole new level, thanks in part to the £1m Sky Bet Ebor; a race that will continue to grow, to rival races like the Melbourne Cup in future years with that huge cash injection from the sponsors.
That aside, does anyone really have a more favourable moment than Enable's win in the Darley Yorkshire Oaks?
The victory had everything. It was her British swansong and the Knavesmire was packed to the rafters with racing fans keen to see her.
She had to do the donkey work up front, making all the running and then showed courage and tenacity to hold off the challenge of Magical, who wasn't going to go down without a fight.
Frankie Dettori's emotions overwhelmed him in the immediate aftermath of the triumph and when someone of Frankie's age and experience sheds a tear, you know you are experiencing something extraordinary.
The relief and pride of their time together appeared to overwhelm him. What a special team they are, with the consummate professional John Gosden steering the ship, Enable the willing challenger and the ebullient Frankie at the helm.
When I saw Frankel grace the turf I didn't think we would see anything as remotely as stirring as that on a racecourse for many years, but we are spoiled to have had Enable around in the same era.
Just take a moment to consider how successful the Juddmonte breeding operation is, they can be very proud.
Give us an eyecatcher for our My Stable trackers from the action you've seen on Sky Sports Racing recently.
The one that springs to mind came at Windsor on Saturday evening.
George Boughey has made a promising start to his fledgling training career and the Newmarket handler obviously has an eye for a relatively cheap horse that he thinks he can get more out of.
He bought Ghayadh at the July Sales for a mere 13,000 guineas and the horse looks like a winner waiting to happen judging on his unlucky run in the mile handicap.
The four-year-old was the winner of three races when trained by Hugo Palmer (Boughey's old boss), but had lost his mojo this year.
However, he showed a great deal of promise at the weekend, despite only finishing seventh of the 10 runners. Jockey Jamie Spencer reported that the horse hung left, causing his saddle to slip and rotate, preventing him from riding an effective finish.
Without that he would surely have gone close to giving his young trainer another winner and compensation awaits.
It's the Beverley Bullet and Solario Stakes on one of the quieter weekends of the summer this Saturday - what do you fancy?
Gosden's success in the Solario Stakes has been well documented and the master trainer looks to have another strong chance of winning Sandown's seven furlong Group Three - a race he won with Too Darn Hot last year and notably in the past with Kingman and Raven's Pass.
Encipher wouldn't be the hotpot that Too Darn Hot was 12 months ago, but as a 5/1 shot with Sky Bet, is a much more attractive betting proposition.
He's entered in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster, Royal Lodge at Newmarket and significantly the Group One Dewhurst on the Rowley Mile and this could be a stepping stone to bigger things.
He may not carry the first colours of owners Godolphin on Saturday, that honour could lie with Al Suhail, but I wasn't enamoured by the attitude of the latter when he won his novice at Yarmouth a couple of weeks ago and he needs to settle better than he did that day.
The Beverley Bullet is a race I always like trying to unravel with some speedy types lining up for this Listed contest.
Clive Cox is responsible for the market leader Tis Marvellous (5/2 Sky Bet), who comes here off the back of a win in a big field heritage handicap at Ascot, which followed his second place in the Wokingham.
The form is strong and he's a worthy favourite but I'm going to side with the Charlie Hills trained Equilateral.
He drops in class having contested Group races on his last four outings, including the King's Stand (when seventh). He hasn't won for almost a year, but this is the type of race that could bring out the best in him and granted a good draw, I'll be sticking with him. He's 7/1 with Sky Bet.