As we near the end of the flat season, we’re starting to work out the best of the best. But that’s put on hold for the moment, as we head up to Ayrshire for another big sprint handicap worth its weight in Bronze, Silver and Gold. The Ayr Gold Cup takes centre stage and I’ve picked out three over the border plus one in the Mill Reef to make today’s Four To Follow.
Not Jumping just yet
2:25 – Ayr Silver Cup H’cap – Jump The Gun @ 8/1 (Betfred)
Jump The Gun returns to this race 10lbs lower than last time. He hasn’t had the most stellar of seasons, tumbling down the weights until a fantastic run last time out in a handicap at Doncaster. He’s back up to a class two handicap and shouldn’t’ find it too difficult from stall 12. Last year he was denied a clear run, but a good break and a bit of luck will help him and William Pyle.
Another horse low down in the weights who catches the eye is Aplomb for Eve Johnson Houghton. Very lightly raced this season, and returns to the Silver Cup seven pounds lower than last year’s effort in sixth. A near miss last time out at Goodwood has him in good form, and has a nice each-way price on him at 11/1 (Betfred)
And what is a big Ayr sprint handicap with a few Jim Goldie runners. The Renfrewshire trainer saddles three here, but I like Be Proud at a big price. His best efforts coming over the six furlongs, so excuse his run in the Racing League, and he’s on softer ground today. Mark Winn may have only had one win in the last two weeks, but he takes a crucial three pounds off here and has a chance at 28/1 (William Hill)
Talking ‘bout my Generation
3:00 – Firth Of Clyde Stakes (Group Three) – Great Generation @ 5/1 (William Hill)
This race doesn’t really produce future classic winners, but it can produce some fairly decent type fillies. She’s unbeaten and won with plenty in hand last time out at Chester. She’s by Holy Roman Emperor and will like the cut in the ground today, as she has on her previous two runs. She poses a significant danger to the favourites and I’m taking advantage of that.
Raze the roof
3:35 – Ayr Gold Cup (Heritage H’cap) – Orazio @ 15/2 (Betfred)
The big one is headed by Orazio, who hasn’t turned up in the big sprints. Both runs in the Wokingham and the Steward’s Cup were disappointing to say the least. But he’s back on sounder ground here for the Ayr Gold Cup. and has been kept fresh by Charlie Hills, which is a big plus in my books. He’s drawn right near the rail in stall 23, and all these positives mean I just can’t look past the favourite.
The next best in the race doesn’t come much closer than Significantly. He ran an absolute stormer in the Portland and has been rather underestimated all season. He’s on the same mark as last week’s run and he’s low in the weights. What more could Julie Camacho want? His performances in handicaps at this level this season have been 262, which puts him bang up there at the finish. Well found in the market at 9/1 (Betfred).
Fast Response caught my eye when the declarations came out. His mark of 103 may look too much to handle, but Brandon Wilkie’s seven pounds puts him at a workable mark of 96, a pound above his winning mark in the Wentworth. He drops in trip to six furlongs after racing at seven this term, and wasn’t too far away in the Queensferry last time out. Interesting at 12/1 (Betfred)
A small selection
3:15 – Mill Reef Stakes (Group Two) – Array @ 5/1 (Betfred)
Winners of this race commonly come from a Group race last time out, particularly the Sirenia at Kempton. The one who follows that line of form is Array for Andrew Balding. He wasn’t too far behind Starlust on the Tapeta, but he’s back on a sound turf surface today. He’s by No Nay Never and plenty of black-type runs in the family. He’s improving all the time and can work the Sirenia form in his favour.
The very best of luck!