Day 7 of The 30 Day Challenge. Not had a chance to think too much about these two divisions so I will write my summary as I think aloud (should be interesting).
An EBF Maiden Stakes over 1m 1y on Standard going.
Eleven two-year-olds compete - nine colts and two fillies, eight with experience. Not the most straightforward of races with a number of leading lights making their debut.
Afnaan is trained by Saeed Bin Suroor. This homebred, sired by Raven's Pass, is out of a winning mare. The stable has a fantastic strike rate with their two-year-olds and this youngster has the prime draw. Bin Suroor can ready juveniles to shine on debut and the stable have been in tremendous form. Debutantes bring an equal measure of hope and concern - inexperience can be costly. On statistics, he holds strong claims.
Always Welcome tells a similar story, representing John Gosden. This American-bred son of Elusive Quality is out of a triple-winning French mare who was lightly raced and reached the pinnacle of her career when winning the Del Mar Oaks (USA) at Grade 1. This homebred races in the familiar silks of George Strawbridge. Clarehaven Stables have been in flying form with their two-year-olds and have decent win and place claims when priced 13/2 & less SP. They often prove even more sturdy when priced 5/2 & less, which is a significant guide in my book. A wide draw is a slight negative but over this distance no major concern.
Jeremy Noseda fields the third of the noted debutants in the shape of Cap Canaille, a homebred for Sanford R Robertson. It is interesting to note this brown colt was sent twice to the yearling sales but withdrawn. This America-bred son of Giant's Causeway is out of a mare who won on debut, victorious at Group 3 and raced predominantly at Group 1 but never quite cut the mustard [the best being beaten less than two lengths when fourth]. She had an official rating of 110. Noseda has fair win and place claims when priced 13/2 & less.
On balance, there is little to pick between the three from a statistical point of view. I wouldn't like to pick between them although all have sound place claims.
An outsider who may be worth a second glance is St Michel trained by Sir Mark Prescott. This homebred son of Sea The Stars was fancied in the betting second start at Leicester although drifted markedly just before the off from 7/2 - 5/1. After showing good pace, he folded tamely in the final two furlongs and proved disappointing. The betting suggested a big performance was expected and it could be the case much better will be seen today. Clearly there are questions to be answered but at 14/1+ there might be a reason to have a small each-way bet and hope better is seen. Valuable experience gives an advantage over newcomers, but you are taking a gamble. If betting on the exchanges, I would look to lay at shorter odds if possible as an option to protect your stake.
12:40 Lingfield - Baydar has good win and place claims. The price doesn't give much value. Kalkrand is trained by John Gosden for Godolphin. This combination has been working and has fair win and place claims if priced 13/2 & less.
12:10 Lingfield - St Michel (20/1 adv) (small ew bet) 4th lost 3rd on line