Race Time: 3.25pm Meeting: York Day: Friday 9th October
Distance: 1m 6f Full Race Name: Stan James Stakes (Handicap) Class Two
Whenever we see a seven runner handicap on a televised race card we have to wonder where all the owners who constantly scream about a lack of prize money have disappeared to – on their yachts in the Caribbean we suppose, and getting little or no sympathy from us! Pin Up (7/2) heads the weights in a mere seven runner renewal for trainer Richard Fahey, and looks to have as good a chance as any and may well be able to put his undoubted consistency to good use today. Placed in the first three home in his last seven races, he won over this trip on his penultimate start in this class as well at Haydock but does race off a mark seven pounds higher now as he did when a well beaten third at Ascot though to be fair, that was a Listed race and this represents a drop back in class which he should appreciate and which makes him the one they all have to beat.
Looking for horses with course and distance against their name is never a bad start and that leads us to Mark Johnston’s Yorkidding (9/2) who won at the track in mid May and over the distance later the same month. Since then, he has lost seven races in a row with a second to Sea of Heaven last time out over two miles perhaps his best effort of late, but as with all the stable’s horses he is tough and doesn’t know how to give in, though whether he has had enough for the season is a different question we sadly can’t answer. On the bright side, he seems to handle fast or soft ground equally the same which may well help his cause here, but there will need to be a few non runners if he wants a chance at getting in to the first three home.
Agent Gibbs (11/2) arrives on the scene carrying a six pound penalty for trainer Ali Stronge who will be hoping he can step up in grade having won a Class Four handicap comfortably last time out. Yet to win at this trip or in this class he has more on his plate than the majority of punters will think, and could even be a possible lay in our book, though horses make fools of us all, and he may well hack up now we have dared to write that!
Right down at the bottom of the weights, the ever shrewd Jim Goldie has sneaked in Sir Chauvelin (10/1) who could pull off a shock in receipt of four pounds or more from his rivals. He did win over this sort of trip last time out at Ayr but that was his first victory at the eleventh attempt, so he is hardly one we feel we can rely on. Put up six pounds for that win in a Class five this is a climb up Everest in class and although he may well have turned a corner, surely connections are here for the day out and the chance of some place prize money.
Who Dares Wins (6/1) arrives here in perhaps the best form for trainer Richard Hannon after three wins on the bounce at Wolverhampton, Salisbury, and Sandown, the last one over this trip as well and with the uphill Esher finish stamina should not be any issue. A son of Jeremy out of a Polish Precedent mare, who knows where that stamina comes from, but beauty is as beauty does and even though he has gone up from a rating of 71 to the 85 he is rated at here, he could still be improving and is worthy of some serious consideration as well.