Saturday 11 June 2011

2:45 Chester (11th June) - Result

A maiden for colts and fillies over 5f16y on good to firm ground.

Quite an interesting race.

Shere Khan went off  8/13f on debut at Brighton but was never travelling and clearly couldn't handle the course. However, this son of Royal Applause ran with credit at Leicester next start, a race which has worked out very well. This looks a capable juvenile and that run could be marked up a length or two as Dobbs rode this youngster as if it was his first run. More should be expected today in a contest which may not be as strong as it seems. The only concern - as with all juveniles at this course - is knowing whether this individual will be suited by the idiosyncratic nature of the track. A good win and place bet.

A number of the opposition have shown levels of form but may have weakness.

Miss Lahar has been fancied on both starts (4/7f last time) but disappointed. With beating Balm by a similar margin at Windsor, she probably ran her race which doesn't inspire confidence. In addition, stepping back to 5f may cause problems and I would be surprised if Channon's filly isn't outpaced.

Courtland King is another who has been knocking on the door. He has shown elements of ability but the form isn't that strong and I would look to others.

Kool Henry is quite an attractive colt, trained by David O'Meara. He has shown speed and should be able to sit handy and has place claims.

Prince Gabrial must have had a problem or two along the way as he was originally entered to run in the Brocklesby Stakes at Doncaster at the start of the season. A  £52,000 yearling purchase, he should be respected, especially as Dr Marwah Koukash has a fondness for winners at Chester. Nicholls has fair place claims with his debutantes and it isn't beyond the realms this son of Moss Vale could go well. However, this course is no place for anything but a sharp, forward two year old and that would be a concern. If backed, it would be a sign of confidence and that Brocklesby entry is probably a sign this gelding has its share of ability.

Blodwen Abbey showed blistering speed at Haydock last time. His form on debut was fair without being anything special. James Unett's juvenile has claims but may find a couple too good.

A horse that could go well at a price is Economic Crisis. Alan Berry has had a lean spell but his juveniles are gradually changing gear. Although a small filly, she has progressed well since her debut. It could well be the case the Catterick form is decent and although last of five at Musselburgh may seem average that was a strong race. Berry has the knack of going well at Chester and from a low draw I can see this daughter of Excellent Art being suited by this turning course. Berry's representative may not have the class of Sheer Khan et al but at a speculative odds I can see a battling performance.

Conclusion: Chester is always a course to be slightly wary. It bring out the best of some horses and the worst of others. The best horse doesn't always win. Sheer Khan has good win and place claims. I would feel more confident if this was a conventional course but he looks the one to beat. A number of the opposition have shown form but many have limitations and something to prove. Prince Gabrial is an interesting debutant but it would be a surprise to see him prevail first time around here. Economic Crisis is a battling type and Berry knows a Chester horse when he sees one. At speculative odds this filly has good win and place claims.

HCE: ''Something of a surprise with Big Note winning for Andrew Balding on debut. Very few of his juveniles manage such a feat at the first time of asking and this could be a talented horse. A nice-looking sort with plenty of scope for improvement this was an easy win. Kool Henry and Courtland King fought out the places with the disappointing Shere Khan in fourth.''