Race Time: 2.55pm Meeting: Salisbury
Distance: 1m 1f 198yds
Full Race Name: Bathwick Tyres EBF Stallions Breeding Winners Fillies’ Handicap Class Four
For reasons unknown the powers that be at Channel Four have added in a competitive looking fillies’ handicap from Salisbury this afternoon though it could prove to be interesting stuff and pretty informative for the future. Restricted to three year olds only, we are basically talking about the balance between the best two-year-old form and those who have grown or improved the most over the winter, but then we just love a challenge. Just the six runners left to go to war with overnight, but with all of them representing decent powerful stables, nothing is guaranteed though we are quietly confident that we have the one most likely to pass the post in front.
Common sense suggests have to start with Saeed Bin Suroor’s Stay Silent (although not certain to run) who has the assistance of James Doyle in the saddle. As a daughter of Cape Cross it seems safe to assume she will get better with age, and although she only won a Wolverhampton maiden from three races last year, she is virtually guaranteed to improve this season. No fancy entries tell us she isn’t anything special though and that surely has to be a wonder?
Fellow Godolphin challenger Endless Time (2/1) is interesting and difficult to gauge, with just the two runs, a “sighter” at Newmarket and a narrow maiden win at Kempton. She may well be a good deal better than the bare form suggests and the form is working out well enough to imply she is in with a chance, though she will need to improve again to get in the mix. Jersey Jewel (15/2) seems likely to be pretty popular with Richard Hughes riding for Richard Hannon, and after finishing an acceptable second to Perrault, but she looked as if this sort of trip was beyond her then, so we are not sure why it likely to suit her today and we can take that risk and give her a swerve.
With Sir Michael Stoute’s historical record with fillies we do feel that Hoorayforhollywood (3/1) could run well at a price after her placed efforts as a juvenile at Doncaster and Bath. There was a time when we wouldn’t hesitate to back the daughter of Oasis Dream who seems sure to improve this season, but the yard are pretty much out of sorts as I write which is just enough to put us off backing her today. Ed Walker is perhaps the least known of the trainers in this race but in Justice Belle he has a filly with a leading chance. She has found one too good for her so far which is a slight concern (does she have the spirit needed to win a race, we wonder?), and has taken second spot in her last three races, but she’s now dropped back in trip, assured to stay the distance and has fitness on her side. In our view she’s the one they need to get past to take first prize.