A Maiden Stakes over 5f 193y on soft going. A big field of two-year-olds - a few of note if not hot reputations. I won't give an in-depth review as it will take all night. As usual, I'll highlight the major protagonists.
Very interested in Fatherly Friend, trained by Karl Burke. This horse is held in high regard. An American bred son of Scat Daddy out of an unraced mare. He is an expensive purchase at $140,000, racing in the familiar silks of Hubert John Strecker. Well fancied on debut, he was too inexperienced to do himself justice but ran on with vigour. After a break of fifty-plus days, a big performance is expected. The stumbling block could be the draw. Stall twelve doesn't lift the spirits and a sluggish start would bring concerns. I would feel much more confident if boxed nearer the rail. If making that debut count this colt will, hopefully, sit in a decent position and by all accounts take some beating.
My Two Scoops is no slouch and found a couple of tough races to compete on his first two starts. Ann Duffiled's charge is a good-looking juvenile who travels well. This step back in trip could see him run to the line. Draw two is a blessing and could hit a place at fair odds.
Few trainers excel like Richard Fahey on debut. As I have said before, he is one of very few handlers who feature a similar win and place rate with his two-year-olds on their first and second start, respectively. To most readers this may seem something and nothing. Take it from me, it's not, it is quite a remarkable feat. What this tells you is that, in general, his debutantes are fit and primed. Nimr may not have any flashy entries but certainly features a price tag which catches the eye. This son of Shamardal is out of a ten-times winning mare who won at Listed class and Group placed with a highest official rating of 110. This half-brother to Gothic cost 200,000GNS at the yearling sales and now in the ownership of Al Shaqab Racing. He is well drawn and fancied in the betting.
Worlds His Oyster was fancied on his debut at York but failed to shine when last of eleven. It's a strange factor but sometimes the worse a horse looks on debut the better they seem to go on their second start. Any horse can disappoint on their first start. John Quinn knows his two-year-olds and this son Pivotal out of a winning mare originally held an Gimcrack Stakes (Group 2) entry. This bay colt was purchased at the breeze-up sales for £110,000. The betting suggested a big run on debut. On my statistics this horse has similar win and place claims which suggests it will either win or be unplaced. Intriguing.
Siege Of Boston is a very rare two-year-old runner for Deborah Sanderson, although she has done well with a few juveniles over the years. This son of Starspangledbanner out of a low-class but multiple-winning mare was backed on debut at Nottingham but never involved. He cost £70,000 at the yearling sales. That disappointment - combined with a small trainer - will see this chestnut colt start at big odds today. There could be more to come.
Conclusion: A competitive race for Carlisle and a few trainers/connections expecting a win. Fatherly Friend has been on my radar and I would fancy this one with confidence if not for a wide draw. That stall position may not make a jot of difference but it does bring concerns. It would put me off betting at relatively short odds and I'd need 5/1 or so to take a risk. The horse to beat and good each way claims if getting into a decent position. Nimr is interesting and well owned, trained and cost a good few quid. Certainly a horse that could go well. Worlds His Oyster & Siege Of Boston could go well but difficult to judge. On balance I'd have a few quid each way on fatherly Friend and hold my breath and hoping the wide draw doesn't make for problems.