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Five four-year-olds to follow

Sir Michael Stoute looks all set for a good season

These four-year-olds showed they could mix it with older horses in 2019 and are worth tracking this season with another year under their belts.

Davydenko

Trainer Sir Michael Stoute is a master at getting horses to improve as they get older and Davydenko looks like the sort he excels with.

Davydenko did not do much wrong last season winning four of his five starts.

On the last of those runs he won a competitive handicap at Doncaster comfortably, with runner-up Certain Lad and fourth home Waarif both going on to win next time out.

Davydenko looks a likely contender for a top handicap over a mile or ten furlongs and could prove himself in better company still.

Great Example

Godolphin’s Great Example did not race as a two-year-old and did not stop improving last year as a three-year-old.

He recorded two victories from seven runs but it was in defeat on his final run of the season in September when he demonstrated he was a horse to keep an eye on in 2020.

He looked all over the winner as he shot clear two furlongs out in a valuable handicap at Newbury only to be overhauled by Caradoc close home.

It would be no surprise if he went one better in a good race this year.

Oxted

A three-year-old had not won Doncaster’s prestigious Portland Handicap for 19 years until Oxted came along last season.

It may have only been the seventh run of his career but he saw off a field of battle-hardened handicappers to win the prize by a half-length.

That may well have been Oxted’s last run in handicaps for the time being and he looks the type to make the leap to Group races over sprint distances.

Trainer Roger Teal has never hidden his high regard for Oxted and has even spoken of him as a July Cup horse.

Pendleton

Trainer Michael Dods knows how to train speedballs and in Pendleton he looks to have a likely contender for the best sprint handicaps.

Pendleton finished fifth in the Ayr Bronze Cup but that run may have been even better than it looked as he was first home on his side.

He beat a big field in a valuable event at Ascot next time before finding only the smart Bielsa too good at Doncaster on his final start.

He might be one for the Ayr Gold Cup in 2020.

Swindler

Pendleton showed he liked soft going last year but Swindler is a sprinter who has shown his best form on quick ground.

He only raced three times last season, winning twice at Ascot, and with just six career starts to his name has the potential to improve.

On the second of those wins he beat some talented older handicappers including Stewards’ Cup runner-up Open Wide and subsequent Ayr Silver Cup winner Golden Apollo.

Given his liking for the course, Swindler would look a likely type for the Wokingham at Royal Ascot if he makes the cut.

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