A six furlong Listed contest confined to fillies and mares is the feature of the Pontefract Sunday card. Our expert tip and runner by runner preview for the race is below.
IN SUMMARY: SPAIN BURG comes over from France to take on a Listed contest at Pontefract and the hint should be taken. Her form as a juvenile was top class, winning the Rockfel. A strong pace over a stiff six furlongs should suit her perfectly, she looks the one to beat. Classical Times drops in trip, another strong travelling type, this could be the making of her. She looks the best of those at a double figured price while Queen Kindly is likely to be popular, though she may find a couple too strong on this stiff course.
1 BUYING TROUBLE – Just a single win from thirteen runs on turf, that came on blisteringly quick ground at Haydock. Her best form has all come on decent ground, she is one of just two runners on the card for trainer David Evans. Evans has been in poor form of late which raises a concern, but she is one of the more likely types of the older brigade.
2 EXCELLENT SOUNDS – Has picked up a couple of seven furlong handicaps this season at a lower level. She wasn’t at her best on softer ground last time so connections will be hoping that the track stays good. This is a step up in grade for her, a step too far on all we know.
3 GLENROWAN ROSE – Has had an excellent season, clocking up a hat-trick of wins at a lower level. She has made every yard of the running on those occasions and if able to get on the sharp end once more, she looks ready for a step up in class. She wouldn’t want conditions too quick but given the form she is in at the moment, she deserves plenty of respect.
4 PETICOATGOVERNMENT – Twice a winner in handicaps in her native Ireland this season. The latter of those was off a mark of just 82 which leaves her with a lot to find at this level. Although she has plenty to prove on official ratings, the fact that she has been sent to the U.K is an interesting note.
5 SHOW STEALER – Beat Marsha in a Newmarket handicap to begin her 2016 campaign, she has only shown that level of form once since. She is fitted with first time cheekpieces here following two very poor runs this year. She is a long way short of what is required to win this even if the headgear helps.
6 STAINTONDALE LASS – Picked up a pair of Class 4 handicaps this season, a level a long way short of this. She travelled like a dream on the latter occasion promising more to come, but has a lot to find with the principals.
7 CLASSICAL TIMES – Didn’t have to improve to make every yard of the running at Redcar last season. She has stepped up in a better grade so far in 2017, including in the Sandringham Handicap at Royal Ascot. She travelled like the best horse in the race for a long way before flattening out close home. This is a stiff six furlongs, so although the step back in trip is sizeable, she may yet relish the opportunity in a quickly run race.
8 EARTHA KITT – Twice a winner from five starts, she showed much improved form for cheekpieces in a York handicap. She was well behind Queen Kindly in the Summer Stakes last time out but she was drawn on the wrong side of the track. She can be marked up a little for that but is going to need to if she is to reverse those places.
10 QUEEN KINDLY – Looked well above average as a juvenile, landing the Group 2 Lowther Stakes. Connections tried to stretch her stamina this season, running poorly in both the Fred Darling and the 1000 Guineas. Her runner up effort in the Summer Stakes was a welcome return to form which makes her a strong contender in this. The slight niggle is that she has run both her two best runs at York which is a speed track, this is a very different test for her.
11 RAVEN’S LADY – Has made a step forward with every run on turf, landing a Class 3 handicap last time out. That was from a mark of 88 so she is going to need further improvement of ten plus pounds to get competitive at this level.
12 SAVANNAH SLEW – It was only a Class 4 event she won by a neck at Carlisle in June from a mark of 76. That was on soft ground as the best of her form has all been. Looks a long way adrift of what is required to get anywhere close in this contest, even if it gets bottomless.
13 SPAIN BURG – Very smart as a juvenile, she landed the Rockfel at Newmarket in September. That was over seven furlongs, the same trip that she made her 2017 debut over. She is a strong travelling type so the stiff six furlongs at this track should be perfect for her. Sent from France to take on this Listed contest, she needs to be taken very seriously.
14 THE WAGON WHEEL – A mercurial talent, she won at Chester two starts ago despite hanging across the track all the way to the stands rail. She let her wayward tendencies get the better of her last time out in the Stewards’ Cup consolation, hanging badly once more, to the right again, onto the far rail costing her any chance. Has the ability to be a serious player at this level but her lack of tractability under pressure is a serious concern.
15 TUNDRA – She won a run of the mill maiden at Lingfield two starts back, the runner up scoring since to at least give the form some respectability. She was dropped in the deep end at Glorious Goodwood, a Group 3 on soft ground stepped up in trip proved beyond her at this early stage of her career. She has more in her favour returned to more suitable ground and could be an each way option.
9 FLOWER OF MAY