11 runners have been declared for the Class 2 sprint handicap for 3yos on Friday’s Ascot card. Our betting tips focus on a well-bred gelding with potential to progress. Read on for our full race preview.
IN SUMMARY: For a £30,000 handicap at Ascot, this doesn’t look particularly competitive. Symposium has struck form in recent weeks and is not opposed lightly as she bids to complete a quick hat-trick but arguably the most interesting runner is MAZZINI. James Fanshawe’s gelding has seemingly been a slow learner but came good in a run-of-the-mill AW handicap last month. The bare form is nothing to get excited about but, given he’s out of a Listed-winning sister of July Cup winner Frizzante, there is significant hope he can use that success as a springboard. Vibrant Chords is finding it hard to get his head in front but might have been a shade unlucky when close second at Thirsk last time and is next on the list.
1 Kadrizzi – Matched his best AW form when coming from off the pace to win the Shergar Cup Sprint over C&D (good to firm) last month; today’s slightly slower ground won’t be a problem but latest run, though perfectly respectable, suggests he’s on a fairly tough mark now.
2 Ornate – Raced exclusively over 5f since finishing fourth over 6f on 2yo debut and is yet to contest a handicap; sometimes harms his chance by refusing to settle but has run well to finish second in two conditions races this month and won’t be far away if he sees out today’s trip.
3 Mont Kiara – Never really got involved after a sluggish start in the Portland at Doncaster on latest outing and was soundly beaten after refusing to settle two starts ago; has something to prove but came from behind to land a valuable prize at Newmarket (6f, good to firm) in July and has obvious claims if able to reproduce that performance.
4 Highly Sprung – Three wins this season, the latest when drawing 5l clear at Yarmouth (6f, good to firm) this month; soundly beaten under 6lb penalty a week later, though, and has full 10lb hike up the weights and a rise in class to contend with here.
5 Sunflower – Only beaten about 6f when sixth of eight in the Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket a year ago, her second start, but the legacy from that performance is a stiff handicap mark; comfortably held behind Kadrizzi when midfield over C&D in the Shergar Cup Sprint last month and probably needs to slip further down the weights.
6 Vibrant Chords – Yet to add to his 2yo maiden win but went very close at Thirsk (6f, good to firm) this month; subsequent 2lb nudge up the weights not helpful but the combination of slightly slower ground and a stiffer track here ought to suit; no surprise if he’s in the thick of things.
7 Quatrieme Ami – Non-runner
8 War Whisper – Looked a good prospect when winning 6f Goodwood maiden in June last year, his second start, but wasn’t seen again until this month and has been comfortably held in his first two handicaps (6f/7f); not written off just yet but clearly needs to up his game.
9 Ower Fly – Enjoyed the chance to dominate from the front when winning six-runner event at Salisbury (7f, good to firm) in July; will be fine over today’s trip but ran poorly on latest outing and may prove vulnerable off current mark now upped in class.
10 Symposium – In-form filly who bids to complete a quick hat-trick after wins this month at Brighton (6f, good to soft; made all) and Goodwood (6f, good to soft; held up); carries a 6lb penalty for the more recent win but is due to go up by that amount anyway; up in class today but commands respect in current mood.
11 Mazzini – From an excellent sprinting family with which connections have done well; this gelding hasn’t always looked straightforward but appeared to have got his act together when winning a Class 5 event at Newcastle (6f, AW) last month and was repeatedly denied a clear run when a beaten favourite at Yarmouth a couple of weeks ago; up in class today but it’s unlikely we’ve seen the best of him.
myracing Forecast Prices: 7/2 Mazzini, 9/2 Vibrant Chords, Symposium, 5/1 Ornate, 10/1 Kadrizzi, Mont Kiara, Highly Sprung, 16/1 War Whisper, 20/1 Sunflower, Ower Fly