Four To Follow: A Classic Classic – Part Two

Yesterday, we saw a shock as City Of Troy checked out of the 2000 Guineas in a major disappointment. Today will be a trickier challenge with the second Classic of the season, the 1000 Guineas. A rather open field with plenty due for improvement, so who takes the nod in today’s four to follow?



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1:50 – William Hill Pretty Polly Stakes (Listed) – Kalpana @ 7/4 (William Hill, Unibet)

Kalpana blew everyone at the Craven meeting, winning in handicap company by 10 lengths. That kind of form is useful when stepping up into Listed company, and should beat the field, who are somewhat either exposed or inexperienced. She has plenty of staying pedigree in her family so shouldn’t have a problem with the trip again.

At a price, a horse I loved last season, Carolina Reaper. It’s hard to say if she will improve from two to three, but she is a Group Three winner (albeit in Germany). It’s a hike in distance and more of a fact-finding mission today, and breeding suggests overall a mile will be best. But her dam did get a mile-and-a-quarter when three years old, so 11/1 (William Hill, BetVictor, Boylesports) may be worth a little punt.


Alert And Awake

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2:25 – William Hill Dahila Stakes (Group Two) – Stay Alert @ 11/2 (William Hill)

Stay Alert may be a little underestimated in the field. She wasn’t successful at Group One level, and this may more to her taste. She’s won twice going fresh plus she’ll get her ground. Also stepping down a touch to a mile and a furlong might bring the best out of her. Plus, she’s top rated without having to give any weight away which makes her price all the more appealing.

Caernarfon was an Oaks horse, many people forget. And she finished third. She did get stepped down to a mile and a quarter, but never produced her best. Her last win came over a mile, and she’s only a furlong above that. Plus, a course win only enhances her chances further. She’s a little shorter than I expected, but she should go well. 9/2 (William Hill, BetUK).


Golden Ring

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3:00 – William Hill Handicap (Heritage) – Bague D’Or @ 13/2 (BetVictor, Betfred, Boylesports)

Bague D’or is a horse who can go really well fresh, with two wins and two seconds. A slight negative is he is off the same mark as he was at the end of last season. But he did only race twice last season and this run may bring about more improvement. Mickael Barzalona is a really interesting jockey booking and may deliver a first win in less than two years.

Adjuvant is another horse who can go well fresh with a win and two places. He inexplicably had a brief campaign over hurdles during the Winter, but he’s definitely a flat horse. He drops two pounds to a mark he finished second at the Goodwood Festival last year, where he was nearly two lengths ahead of third. Adjuvant won over C&D last May off a higher mark but has every right to hit the frame. 10/1 (BetVictor, Betfred, Boylesports).

Struth is a really interesting character. He’s won twice off a break, including on debut. He finished third over 1m 6F at Haydock last season, which is his only experience over the trip, so is still a bit unexposed. 96 is a mark he can give or take, but given he’s won two races in his career in the spring, now may be the time to back him. 11/1 (William Hill, BetVictor, Boylesports).


A Classic Renewal

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1000 Guineas (GROUP ONE) – Fallen Angel @ 100/30 (General)

Yesterday, we all thought we knew how the first Classic of the season would go. Now the second Classic is here, it’s opened up enormously. However, a Group One winner in Fallen Angel should not be discounted. Brilliant backs the form up from her win in the Moyglare Stud Stakes last season, but so does her win in the Sweet Solera. Bred from a Group Mile winner, she should have it in her to win this race.

It may be a surprise that Porta Fortuna turns up here, but she almost won at the Breeders’ Cup. She came within half a length at a distance that she had not experienced that season, which shows a massive improvement at a young age. She should get the distance now she’s three, and her dam won over further in her career. Definitely a watch at 14/1 (Unibet).

Darnation lit up my eyes when watching her live at Thirsk breaking her maiden. She achieved Group success since, but just failed in the Criterium for Fillies and Longchamp. She’s a proven Group winner over the distance which should stand her in good stead, despite her being 33/1 (William Hill, 10Bet).

The very best of luck!

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