A field of six go to post for the second race of the day at Brighton on Monday. See our betting tips and the full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: Sarstedt sets the standard on known form with a second at Lingfield in July, but that was a Class 6 Novice race and newcomer ILLUSIONAL won’t need to be anything flashy to win on debut. This son of Bernardini has a lovely pedigree and hails from the Mark Johnston yard who have an outstanding 21% strike rate here with two-year-olds in recent years, with a flawless 100% record this season from four runners. He won’t need to be anything special on debut and, with David Probert taking the ride, he can get off the mark at the first attempt. Rastrelli cost €550,000 and isn’t taken lightly, but his previous efforts have left something to be desired.
1 ASHINGTON – Bought for 55,000gns as a yearling, yet this son of Canford Cliffs is yet to show any form of note, well beaten at odds of 8/1 and 33/1 in his first two runs. He didn’t improve from his first run when floundering at Chelmsford on his latest start, struggling as soon as his rivals went for home where he was all but tailed off. That maiden does look above average in hindsight, but he was simply outclassed and that is the likely outcome again here.
2 ILLUSIONAL – Very well related newcomer for Mark Johnston, with this son of Bernardini a brother to Gamilati (UAE 1,000 Guineas winner) and half brother to horses such as Gracefield (1m winner) and Late Romance (7f winner as a two-year-old). The Johnston yard have a 21% strike rate here with two-year-olds in recent seasons and are currently four from four this term, so this horse needs to be carefully monitored. David Probert takes the ride and he looks hard to stop in nothing more than a fair maiden.
3 KALAKCHEE – Has shown very little promise in two runs for Amy Murphy thus far, sent off at odds of 25/1 and 33/1 to heavy defeats. His latest sixth of six at Kempton was a step backwards, pulling very hard towards the winner and, after pressing the leader to the two furlong pole, he weakened rapidly. He’s very hard to recommend after that display and the handicaps await after today’s run.
4 RASTRELLI – Bought for a staggering €550,000 as a two-year-old by Godolphin, but he’s yet to show the talent that his price tag would suggest he has. He was fifth on debut at Newmarket behind several next time up winners and did improve marginally on that effort when fourth at Goodwood, with his effort petering out after the furlong pole. That was at the mile, so a step back to seven should suit, especially as his pedigree is all speed. George Wood takes off a very useful three pounds and he’s not one to take lightly as he could burst into life at any time.
5 SARSTEDT – Finished fifth on debut for Henry Candy behind the subsequent Richmond winner Barraquero before bettering that effort upped to the seven furlong distance. He was carried right at the furlong pole, only headed towards the finish by a horse who had plenty more experience to tackle the softer ground. In typical Candy style, this son of Sixties Icon should improve again and, with the yard red-hot at present, he looks sure to make his presence felt under Dane O’Neill.
6 SWIFT FOX – Sent off at 66/1 on debut for Gary Moore, showing little promise for the future when always behind and outpaced over the five furlong trip. He did improve on his latest start when ninth at Newbury, but that was only to a very modest level, fading late on. Hard to recommend him here as others have achieved far more and he looks set for a struggle as he bids for his handicap mark after today.