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Weatherbys Racing Bank £300,000 2-Y-O Stakes (Class 2)
A field of 22 go to post for the concluding race of the day on ITV at Doncaster on Thursday. See our betting tips and full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: There is little between Great Prospector and Tangled, with the former fancied to reverse the placings of their previous meeting at York. The selection though is Mick Channon’s NEOLA who has been highly tried since her win on her second start back in May, including at pattern level where she’s been far from disgraced. She won with something in hand on her latest start at Goodwood and is well treated on these terms, so should take all the beating, with softer ground ideal.
1 MEDAL OF HONOUR – Has some solid form in the book for Joseph O’Brien, but he still remains a maiden after seven starts, having to shoulder a big weight today if he wants to break his maiden. He was sixth in a Group 3 on his latest start but was well held and he should be bogged down by his weight today.
2 SEBASTIANO RICCI – Finally got off the mark at the seventh attempt when scoring in a four runner race at Roscommon in September, gliding through the mud that day. He gets similar conditions here, however a weight of 9st 2lb is extremely harsh on what he’s shown previously and he looks booked for a struggle under Ryan Moore.
3 DANZAN – Got off the mark at the third attempt when showing a huge amount of improvement to win by ten lengths at Pontefract in July. He faded into fifth on his latest start in a Group 3 at York and couldn’t be dismissed back over a shorter trip which he should enjoy. Softer ground should be no problem and he looks sure to play an each way role.
4 AREEN FAISAL – Won on nursery debut at Pontefract in July and he was far from disgraced when third in a big field nursery at York three weeks ago, although this is far more competitive and he needs substantial improvement. He makes his stable debut for David O’Meara so market support would be interesting, but he should miss out here.
5 CHOOKIE DUNEDIN – Won on debut for Keith Dalgleish when making all in game fashion, bettering that effort when tenth in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot in June. He took a backwards step when last at Ripon on his latest start (behind Helvetian) and he needs to bounce back from that here. He’s not the best treated on these terms and this doesn’t look like his day.
6 INTERNATIONAL MAN – Won on debut at York in June but he’s had his limitations exposed on his last two runs for Richard Fahey, looking very one paced at Beverley on his second start. He again had every chance when one paced in the closing stages at the same venue and he does need to improve here to threaten. Others in the line-up look far more progressive and he’s best watched.
7 LAUGH A MINUTE – Another maiden in the line-up, but this son of Mayson runs for top connections and didn’t run a bad race on his latest start when third in a competitive maiden at York in August. There is no doubt that he needs significant improvement, but he’s one of the more interesting outsiders and could improve for the softer ground. One to keep an eye on for the future at the very least.
8 QUEEN’S SARGENT – Yet to score from five attempts for Kevin Ryan, though he went very close on his latest start when a head second to a horse who was completing a four-timer. He has plenty to find on these terms but he has looked progressive and handles softer going, so could out-run his odds at a much bigger price.
9 ZAP – Looked like a useful sort when winning on debut at York, following up with a close third in the Woodcote Stakes at Epsom, but he’s gone backward in two runs since. He was sixth and behind a few of these when last seen at York and further improvement is needed on these terms. He’s an each way player at a bigger price considering his earlier efforts, but you would need a leap of faith to back him.
10 COSA NOSTRA – Another runner for Richard Fahey who looks like one of his least likely candidates, running consistently well in Novice races but always coming up short. He finds himself in a much tougher race here and it’s easy to look elsewhere.
11 GREAT PROSPECTOR – Won on debut at Nottingham in June for Richard Fahey before pointing himself out to be potentially useful when third in the Superlative Stakes at Newmarket. He was second behind Tangled on his latest start at York off of equal terms, but the extra furlong is in his favour and he should reverse those placings with soft ground fine. Greatly respected under Paul Hanagan.
12 HELVETIAN – Improved on a very poor debut to win a Bath novice race back in August, but he’s mainly struggled since and was flattered by his proximity to the rest when last at the Curragh in Group 1 company. He was well held in a similar race to this at that same venue four days ago and this looks like a big ask under Graham Lee.
13 HUMBLE GRATITUDE – Karl Burke-trained colt who has posted a similar level of form on his last two runs since debut, winning a novice race at Hamilton on his latest start. He needs plenty of improvement now pitched into a tougher race and you couldn’t say that he’s well treated on these terms. Others are preferred on this occasion.
14 REQUINTO DAWN The least likely of all the Richard Fahey runners, with his latest start at Beverley when a head second an anomaly when you look at the majority of his previous runs. He looks out of his depth here and he isn’t particularly well treated either at the weights.
15 TANGLED – Has won his last two starts for Richard Hannon, winning a Nursery at Newmarket by a wide margin before taking a valuable sales race at York ahead of Great Prospector on his latest start. He may struggle to keep those placings though with the extra furlong firmly in his rivals’ favour, but he still rates as a big danger as he’s highly progressive.
16 ALBA POWER – Another who’s looked progressive, winning on debut before following it up with three good efforts in a variety of tough races. He was only two lengths behind Tangled and Great Prospector at York on his latest start and didn’t have the best of passages. He remains with potential and has a very good chance on these terms under Josie Gordon. Another to consider with softer ground fine.
17 ALFA MCGUIRE – Won on Good to Firm going at Beverley on his second start by a commanding margin, but he followed that up with a lesser showing on softer ground and his latest victory was again back on firm going. He was green that day so more can be expected, but there are question marks about his suitability to softer going and he’s likely to find at least a few too good back at this trip.
18 FARAASAH – Shaped with promise when second on debut at Newmarket but he’s not been seen since a very poor effort at Ascot on his latest start in July. He showed temperament that day which was concerning and he’ll need to be at his peak after a 62 day break to feature. He’s not badly treated on these terms but he’s risky and others are preferred.
19 JEDI MASTER – One of the more exposed types for Richard Fahey who will relish today’s ground, but has plenty to find to trouble the principles here. His latest sixth in a Class 4 Nursery at Sandown is nowhere near the required standard and he’s likely to be labouring late on here.
20 MAGIC JAZZ – Front-runner for Kevin Ryan who made it two from two in nurseries with a comfortable success at Hamilton, using the stand’s rail to good effect. Another big leap forward is needed now that he’s pitched into a much tougher race and he won’t be getting a soft lead in this. Hard to see him playing a role in the finish against some very useful rivals.
21 ELYSIUM DREAM – Has run reasonably well in two soft ground nurseries the last twice for Richard Hannon but she was well held in third on her latest start at Newmarket. Those weren’t bad efforts though and she’s not weighted out of this, with the in-form Hollie Doyle taking the ride. She’s an each way player at a bigger price and shouldn’t be discounted.
22 NEOLA – Mick Channon inmate who’s been highly tried since winning her second start, finishing second in a Listed race at York in May. She gained a second career victory with a comfortable win at Goodwood on her latest start in similar conditions and she looks extremely well treated on these terms. Ben Curtis takes the ride and she should take all the beating for a trainer in good form.