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Frankel who? A new Dawn Approaches!

Dawn ApproachWell, what an amazing weekend of racing.

Dawn Approach showed just what a champion he is, the much hyped Toronado couldn’t live with him as they lay together upsides. As Kevin Manning started to move on him, Hughesy seemed to be travelling, it was just simply a call from Manning to alert his partner that it was time to go to work. The response was breath taking and was a sight to behold as Jim Bolger’s superstar quickened away up the hill.
The son of New Approach had a long campaign in his juvenile year and to have him ready first time up against the likes of Toronado, he having had the advantage of a run, is a testament to the genius of Bolger.

Frankel was THE wonder horse that we racing fan’s yearned for but if (and it is a big if at the moment) Dawn Approach heads for the Derby and wins, then what’s not to say that Jim Bolger and Godolphin don’t try to emulate Sir Henry’s super horse’s achievement’s?

I said this last year when Sheikh Mohammed bought into Dawn Approach and I’ll say it again… he needs to keep the horse with the mercurial Bolger. With what has happened of late within the Godolphin camp, who is to say that the Sheikh won’t send more Godolphin horses over the Irish Sea?

Whilst on the subject of the drug’s scandal that has rocked and embarrassed the Godolphin chief, I think Clare Balding scored a massive own goal on Saturday by trying to quiz him on the BHA investigation. It was out of order as the moment was about a truly great performance from potentially a great horse.

Another horse that showed great potential on Saturday at HQ and whereas Dawn Approach isn’t a certain Derby runner, Mark Johnston’s Windhoek is definitely Epsom bound. The son of Cape Cross veered left in the final furlong which Joe Fanning put down to greenness. But having taken this listed event following his win in the Tattersalls Million race (when Johnston said they thought he would need the run), where he beat Luca Cumani’s Derby horse Greatwood, you would have to say he will have a lively each way squeak in the big race next month.

Having won the Jockey’s Championship last year for the first time and having won Classic races around the World, it was a well deserved first English Classic win in the 1000 Guineas on Sky Lantern for Hughesie. For him and his father-in-law, Richard Hannon, it was some consolation for the under performing Toronado in the colt’s race the day before.

Other notable performances from the weekend included a hat-trick from the former champion Kieren Fallon at Goodwood (I managed to back one of his losers!), which included a well deserved Listed race win for the Luca Cumani trained Khione. It was indeed one that got away for the team for had Luca had runner’s at the Guineas meeting, Kieren would of been at HQ and Kirsty would have ridden her.

I paid a visit to my local track Thirsk on Saturday and I took a few horses from the meeting as ones to follow.

IMPERIAL DJAY – never got into the race at Thirsk and as he is entered at Chester this week. Keep an eye on him if he goes and gets a kind draw. He is now off 85 having won off 89 and 93 albeit when he won those two consecutive races at the Roodeye last year. They were at the end of May and beginning of June so, it may well be that he’s been aimed at those again. But I wouldn’t be put off backing him this week if he runs.

TWO FOR TWO – was very unlucky in the Hunt Cup, having a worse run than you’d get on the M25 on a Friday. Norse Blues won the race from the front and while he had a clear run throughout, SDS was badly hampered in the early stages but stayed on to some effect. I’m sure Mr O’Meara will have a race lined up for him, just as he will for ANDERIEGO, who also finished well to grab second.

At Doncaster, another Ruth Carr inmate took my eye. KLYNCH – ran well, staying on over 6 furlongs in a class 3. He could well be making a return to the winner’s enclosure in the next few weeks as he traditionally does well in May-June.

Finally, HOOFALONG – having made a nice debut in a York maiden last year, he then seemed to misbehave in the gates on his next two starts. As a result he was given a workable mark of 72 and having again seemed to dwell in the stalls, Paul Mulrennan pushed him up to grab the rail and from then on it was easy for him. He could well progress through the handicap ranks.

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Things are getting busier now which is again the reason for my blog been later than usual, some of the jockey’s are starting to pick up. No one more so than Raul Da Silva at the moment, he has had a few rides and he has eight over the next couple of days.

TARTAN GIGHA could go well in the 3.25 at Beverley for him (it’s a shame there are only 6 runners for e/w purposes), as he will of come on for his seasonal debut. Raul rides EIJAAZ at Catterick and this old course favourite showed last time out that even at the age of twelve that he retains his love for the game and his favourite track. Even on worse terms than in a handicap he will probably run better than his mark.

Kirsty is reunited with IDOL DEPUTY in the Kempton 3.50. The pair won recently at Wolverhampton and the horse followed that win up with a narrow defeat under Rachael Kneller. He was held off by the one time smart performer Lowther and his biggest threat could come from the Nathan Alison ridden REE’S RASCAL, who loves it around Kempton.

SHARP AND SMART beat a well handicapped rival last week at Chepstow and it’s interesting that Hughie Morrison sends his filly out again so soon. I will be doubling her up with another last time out handicap winner in the Queen’s SEA SHANTY in the 4.35 at Windsor.

Whatever your doing, I hope you have a great week.

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