Race Time: 3.40pm Meeting: Doncaster Distance: 6f 110yds
Full Race Name: Weatherbys Hamilton £300,000 2-Y-O Stakes Class Two
With £300,000 guaranteed in prize money it comes as no great surprise to see a massive early line up and thanks to the conditions of the race, the less fashionably/expensively bred get weight allowances to increase their chances, and boost the breeding industry all at the same time. Those expecting the Hannon yard to have monopolized this race over the years are in for a shock as they have failed to find the winner in the last ten years even the once, though Richard Fahey and Jeremy Noseda have won it twice each, though as the Fahey yard had fourteen declared (and are now down to “just” the six!), and the Noseda yard none, we are not sure if that is of much help! The odds seem a poor guide as well with winners ranging from 2/1 up to 100/1, though only the two favourites have gone in, so at least we don’t need to be overly concerned about whoever we eventually back. Picking tow Fahey horses to go to war with, and we start with the unknown quantity that is Appleton (18/1), a once raced son of Showcasing who was well supported at Pontefract over five furlongs where he ran on well inside the last to beat the more experienced Shaka Zulu by a length with the rest well beaten off. Sure to improve for the run, he looks as if he may have been kept back for this race to us and it was nip and tuck whether he was our final selection or not. Mark Johnston is next on our short list and we are interested in Rosy Morning (16/1) who is yet another in this race going the right way. Runner up to Fast Enough at Brighton on her debut she showed the benefit of that experience with a runaway Chelmsford victory by close to five lengths from Aqua Libre (a winner since), and although she will need to improve again to take a hand in this race at the weights, there is every reason to think that is more than possible and we will be keeping an eye on her in the morning betting to see if there are any early market moves. The other Fahey horse that catches our eye is the well priced Holy Grail (12/1), who will hopefully live up to his name and land the spoils for us today. Six races on his CV show he has never been out of the first four, and his win at Newmarket in a twenty runner nursery looks even better in the cold light of day, though runner up Tutu Nguru was giving him nine pounds. With both track and going sure to suit, he could be the value call this afternoon and does look as if he will be mightily difficult to keep out of the frame.
Dean Ivory may not be a household name but he is responsible for the best horse at the weights if Twin Sails (5/1) turns out and he is certainly the one to beat granted a decent draw, of course. After two minor wins at Newbury and then Salisbury, he was a three quarter of a length fourth to Galileo Hold in the Group Two Vintage Stakes at Glorious Goodwood but rather let his supporters down last time out when well beaten at Newbury in a Listed race. We feel he is much better on a faster surface which hem ay well get if the rains stay away, and if the going is good or quicker, he will almost certainly start as favourite and rightly so. To end with, you can never ignore the Richard Hannon yard in this sort of race, and we were very shocked to see his name missing from the recent roll of honour. The betting suggests Humphrey Bogart (11/2) has the best chance of his two runners, and we can’t argue. His Doncaster maiden win wasn’t overly inspiring, but he did run a much better race when fourth to Recorder in a Listed race at York, though he was running on over the seven furlongs that day and may find everything happening a bit too quickly for him over the six today, so we will begrudgingly let him run unbacked this afternoon and hope our assessment is accurate?