Its the middle of May, which means its time to dig out those York betting tips for the famous three-day Dante meeting on the Knavesmire.
Other than the Ebor, it’s York’s feature meeting of the year and with trials for the Oaks and the Derby, it’s arguably the most important for racing fans.
The likes of Golden Horn, Roaring Lion and Motivator have all won at this meeting over the years, and with plenty more big names lining up this week, Luke Parkinson has taken a look at some betting hints to follow.
Foreigners have long had a love affection with York, from the Vikings to the Normans, there are plenty who have wanted to make their mark on the famous city.
When it comes to the racecourse though, it’s Italian Frankie Dettori who has made this place feel like a home from home, and Yorkshire racing fans are more than happy to keep it that way.
Last year, Frankie rode 7 winners from 21 rides at York at a strike rate of 33% and has been the top jockey at the track for the last five years with 21 winners from 95 rides, giving him a strike rate of 22% and +3.72 from a £1 stake over that time.
He has a great chance to get off to a flying start in the opener with First Eleven, along with plenty of other big rides, and don’t forget it was only a week or two ago that he was racking up a treble at Ascot.
Frankie is a regular partner for John Gosden these days and the pair certainly enjoy a bit of Yorkshire air when it comes to the Dante meeting.
The Musidora Stakes is the feature race on the first day and Gosden has taken five of the last eight renewals, with Star of Seville (2015), So Mi Dar (2016) and Shutter Speed (2017) giving him a hat-trick most recently.
This week, Gosden sends Entitle to keep his impressive run going although the betting would suggest she has some work to do against some of her rivals.
Fast forward to Thursday though, and Gosden has a brilliant chance to claim his fifth Dante and his fourth in just five seasons.
The unbeaten Too Darn Hot will put his record on the line for the Newmarket handler, although he does face some tough competition in the form of the Aidan O’Brien-trained Japan, who is also well fancied for the Derby.
It’s a similar story for John Gosden in the main race on Friday. He landed the Group Two Yorkshire Cup with Stradivarius last season, and after winning the £1 million bonus last year, he is back again to try and defend his crown on his first start of 2019.
He’s quite clearly the best horse involved and considering he is also the only course and distance winner that’s entered, you’d have to say he’s the one to beat.
Gosden horses will obviously be feared across the three days at York this week, but don’t discount William Haggas.
He has a 19% strike rate on the Knavesmire in the last five years and has taken some big races at this meeting recently, including the Duke of York with Tasleet (14/1) in 2017 and the Musidora last year with Give And Take (7/2).
His horses are often underestimated, especially in Group company, which makes him a great play for each-way punters.
Young Rascal is one that could fit that bill for Haggas in the Yorkshire Cup. He was a multiple Group winner last season and could be suited by the step up to 1m6f, after disappointing in two starts so far this campaign.
York isn’t always the easiest place for punters to find winners, but the Musidora Stakes has certainly rewarded them in recent years and that bodes well for Sparkle Roll.
Six of the last 12 winners have been the outright market leader in the betting, including an odds-on trio for John Gosden, while 11 of the last 12 Musidora winners have come from the top three in the betting.
Only Madame Chiang falls outside that recent trend after she won the race in 2014 as an 8/1 shot for Kieren Fallon and David Simcock.
It’s slightly different for the Dante, which shows how difficult it can be the find a winner on the Knavesmire.
Only 2 of the last 12 favourites have obliged in the feature race, while five of the last twelve winners were from the top three in the betting.
Double figure priced winners have won more often than the favourite in the Dante, with Permain scoring in 2017 at 10/1 and Libertarian getting the job done at a massive 33/1 in 2013.
Something which may be worth noting if you fancy adding something extra to our ITV Tips this week.