Atalanta Stakes Tips & Betting Preview

Four winning favourites in the last ten years and just the one at a double figure price (Nakuti, 12/1 last season), suggest the punters hold sway in this particular race, though Sir Michael Stoute has won four of those and is without a runner in 2016 which is a bit of a shame. Fellow Newmarket trainer Chris Wall will try and fill that void and he has always thought an awful lot of Mix And Mingle (11/1 Each Way), if only she would reproduce her sparkling home gallops on the race track this season. She was seven and a half lengths seventh to Minding in the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on ground connections felt wasn’t fast enough for her, but she has had her perfect conditions twice since in Listed company at Ascot and Haydock and failed to win on both occasions. Even if we forgive her a fifth to Red Box at Ascot and smile favourably on her second to Aljazzi at Haydock that still leaves her with a bit to find at this level, and the jury is out over whether she is or isn’t as good as connections once hoped at this crucial stage of her three-year-old career.

In a race looking increasingly Newmarket dominated, James Fanshawe has Spirit Raider (9/1) in here as she looks to make it three wins out of four starts this season. A mile is certainly her trip as proved with a Class Two handicap win on her reappearance at Nottingham bur she hated the soft ground at Royal Ascot and came home a well beaten twenty-third in the Royal Hunt Cup. Back on a quicker surface at Pontefract last time out she took the Listed Pipalong Stakes despite Freddie Tylicki dropping his whip and although this is obviously another step up in class she keeps on improving and could surprise and is well worth a bet this afternoon.

Generally speaking Ralph Beckett is not in the best of form with a one in ten strike rate but no one can suggest his September Stars (10/1) isn’t in rude health after wins at Windsor in Class Four handicaps by three and a half lengths and six lengths respectively. The daughter of Sea The Stars is tactically versatile and can either make the running or sit just off the pace but whether this leap of faith will be rewarded seems doubtful on what we have seen so far, though there is no doubt that she is still improving.

As far as official ratings are concerned, Andrew Balding’s Blond Me (8/1) tops the numbers and is one of very few horses here actually dropping in class. Her last two races were in the Group Two Duke Of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot when eleventh of fourteen to French raider Usherette and then ninth of ten to Mutakayyef in the Summer Mile at the same track but she was out with the washing on both occasions and appears to have her own ideas about the game lately and is hardly one to rely on.

Last but not least and John Gosden may well run Persuasive (5/2) as the filly looks to keep her unbeaten record as she slowly rises up through the ranks. She has gone from a maiden to a Class Four handicap to a Class Two handicap to a listed handicap (at Royal Ascot) without defeat and although she would be missing out a Listed race (the natural next step), she can’t be knocked until she is beaten and has to have a decent chance of another success this afternoon.

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