Saturday 14 May 2011

4:00 Newmarket (14th May)

A Novice Stakes over 6f.

Four juveniles have a proven level of form which the debutantes may struggle to achieve.

Snowed In was very inexperienced at Kempton on debut but showed a gritty determination on his second start over course and distance. Moore's gelding has not been seen for over a month so there may have been a niggle or two along the way. A rather small grey by Dark Angel, this will be a tough task and likely to struggle in this higher grade.

The three main contenders are Lilbourne Lad, Tell Dad & B Fifty Two.

Lilbourne Lad was very well backed on debut at Doncaster over 5f. The form of that race has been let down with a number behind falling short on their next starts. This son of Acclamation cost £80,000 was going on at the finish and this 6f should suit. It was encouraging that Hannon's colts won on debut because it is often a marker for their better types. Lilbourne Lad has the potential to progress further over this 6f and has a fair chance of winning.

The stable's other representative Tell Dad ran a great race on debut and it was noticeable how well this youngster travelled. Hughes didn't ask too many questions and clearly hoped to sneak a win but Cathy Gannon had other ideas riding Jack Who's He. Fancied to go one better on his second start at Newmarket, this two-year-old owned by Andrew Tinkler was put in his place by Commissar, a very easy winner. In ways Tell Dad didn't shine that day and the form of Liebeszeil & Come On Blue Chip has not advertised his prospects. Perhaps this extra furlong will help. I can see this bay colt travelling well for most but he still has something to prove after a slightly disappointing effort last time.

John Hills has found the Midas touch with his two-year-olds this season and for that reason alone must be respected. B Fifty Two didn't show much ability on debut at Newbury - the wide draw didn't help - but was very well backed on his second start at Bath. That was only an average auction race but there was much to like about the way this son of Dark Angel finished his race. Seb Sanders knows how to get the best out of his rides and this grey looks equally willing. This could be the dark horse of the race.

Of the rest, Casa Bex went to Leicester on debut but was withdrawn when refusing to go in the stalls. Philip McBride is a talented trainer and I would certainly keep an eye on this colt by Auction House on his second start. The stable rarely win on debut which negates his chances today, especially against a number of talented juveniles.

Manomine wasn't the most expensive of buys and owned by the Brittain family. Clive is known for his optimism and it is never a good idea to rule out him winning any race. It could well be the case this youngster has ability because he has been engaged for a number of stakes races including the Lily Agnes. If you fancy a punt on an outsider this may be your kind of selection. On balance, it would seem a difficult race to win. However, sometimes stakes races defy logic. I would rather watch and learn a little more about this colt by Manduro but it wouldn't a surprise to see him win this season.

Ooi Long is another who is best watched.

HCE: ''Not too many got into this and at the furlong pole it was a match between B Fifty Two & odds on favourite Lilbourne Lad. The former trained by John Hills is a determined type and held the late challenge of Hannon's colt. Tell Dad looked threatening for a few strides but settled for third.''