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Shadwell Joel Stakes (Group 2)
A mile Group 2 contest, it was won in 2016 by the Aidan O’Brien trained Cougar Mountain. Our expert tip for the 2017 running of the Joel Stakes live on ITV Racing is below.
IN SUMMARY: The obvious danger here is Beat The Bank who has won four of his five starts and is hugely progressive, preference however is for WHISKY BARON. Coming over from South Africa, Brett Crawford’s classy five-year-old has won his last five starts and easily won a Grade 1 when last seen. It’s hard to compare form, but he’s clearly a very smart horse and looks like a huge slice of value under top jockey Greg Cheyne as he wouldn’t be brought here without a big chance.
1 SOVEREIGN DEBT – Likeable eight-year-old who has had a brilliant season for Ruth Carr, winning three big races for connections. He was far from disgraced when fourth on his latest start and he has place claims once again. He’s vulnerable for win purposes though with a penalty here.
2 CUSTOM CUT – Won this race in 2014 but he’s not quite as good as he once was, with a second in a Listed race at Pontefract remaining his best effort this season. He has a mountain to climb here against some classy rivals and is dismissed.
3 JALLOTA – Best form this season has come over shorter, finishing fourth in the competitive City Of York Stakes in August. He was well held, however, in a Group 3 at Chantilly when last seen and a step up to the mile isn’t ideal. He’s another who doesn’t look good enough here.
4 MUSTASHRY – On the upgrade at present, winning the Group 3 Strensall Stakes at York back in August by a comfortable margin. He holds Sovereign Debt on that form and, although more is needed here, he’s going the right way and will handle conditions.
5 WHISKY BARON – South African horse for the Brett Crawford yard who is unbeaten in his last five starts for the top trainer. This is a tough race for him to come over for, but he’s clearly a smart sort and, with conditions to suit, he may just spring the surprise under Greg Cheyne as he wouldn’t be brought here without a big chance at victory.
6 ZONDERLAND – Lightly raced four-year-old who won a Group 3 at Salisbury in August 2016 before a second in the Group 2 Celebration Mile at Glorious Goodwood. He returned from a year off to finish second in that race again, with a repeat of that performance seeing him with a good frame chance for top connections.
7 BEAT THE BANK – Lightly raced sort who has won four of his five starts for Andrew Balding, easily winning a Group 3 at Glorious Goodwood on his latest start. He’s hugely progressive and there is likely far more to come from him, so he has to be respected as the biggest danger to our selection.
8 SIR JOHN LAVERY – At one time one of the leading contenders for Derby, winning a Listed race at Cork two starts ago. He wasn’t as good when only fourth in a Group 2 at Leopardstown when last seen and this is a much tougher Group 2 contest. He has to be respected as he isn’t exposed, however he can be opposed.
9 WHITECLIFFSOFDOVER – Has gone well here in the past for Aidan O’Brien, but he’s been well held on most of his starts this season, only fifth at Leopardstown when last seen. Ryan Moore continues his partnership with Sir John Lavery and he can only be watched.