Chester kicks off the first of the provincial festivals of flat racing for the year.
Those who love their racing take in both Chester and York and put themselves through physical, mental and financial torture as they try to party hard for three days and punt themselves to distraction. Ohh how we love it.
So today we come up with the Stan James Chester Cup day 1 preview of how to give yourself the edge and if you stick to our principals then we think we can get you ahead over the 3 days. Its hard to have discipline but that’s what we need to put a score on the board – or more particularly in your pocket
1.45 – Manor House Stables – Lilly Agnes, The form here revolves around a race at Musselburgh, where the 2nd favourite in this race, Mukhamal beat the favourite, Cheerio Sweetie. Form suggests that Cheerio Sweetie was inconvenienced at a vital stage and may have beaten Mukhamal but for that. I dont think so. However the draw and the big weight pull tells me that I need to be with Cheerio Sweetie. Unoriginal but I just cant see Roudee from stall 9 getting in the fight at the weights either. 2 units e/w Cheerio Sweetie @ 5/2
2.15 – Cheshire Oaks – A Good race, very good horses. Terrific, for Aiden O’Brien was expected to be all the rage after an eye catching 3rd, needing further in a listed race where the 4th has won a listed contest since. With Aidens record here surely a certainty. Well the bookies prices dont say that and there is strong support for Bright Approach who was impressive at Newbury. Given the lack of sustained support for Terrific I will go with Mr Gosdens horse 2 units e/w @ 9/4 Bright Approach
2.45 The Stan James Chester Cup. We have covered this in detail in our previous post and whilst the money is for the front two in the betting after the Ripon race I think that race fell apart and I’m not sure the extra 2.5 furlongs plays to either horses strength. I do think Communicator was staying on at the end of his Lingfield Race and he will be spot on today for a stable in great form. He also represents a bit more value. 1 unit e/w @ 9/1 Communicator
3.15 Stellar Group Handicap – A typical Chester sprint. You could name a few in this race and normal judgement says draw and pace is needed. There is plenty of that in this race and I think it could be set for a bigger price winner. I like the look of Sir Maximillian who goes well fresh and might be under the handicappers radar at the moment. 1 unit e/w Sir Maximillian @ 8/1
3.50 Boodles Diamond Maiden – As always a tricky maiden as you try to work our not just any form and breeding lines but also who will act on the track and who will handle the large crowd. Unoriginal but the favourite Prince of Stars looks like he will improve a lot for his first run and whilst he doesnt look much value, he does look solid. 3 units win Prince of Stars @ 5/4
4.25 Stella Artois Conditions Stakes – Luck Beggar was an impressive winner at Newbury and looks a sprinter on the way up. Whilst this race also has loads of pace in it there is a chance he is a group sprinter in the making. It would be great if the 12 year old Borderlescott went in but he may have to give way to younger legs. I think this really is set up for a closer with pace from at least 4 different horses. They really will scorch the track – 2 units e/w Lucky beggar @ 9/4 – keep on the right side of this one for the rest of the year
5.00 Diabetes UK Handicap – This could top off a big day for John Gosden as we think that his charge Anglo Irish looks on the way up. Two wins at Lingfield over 10f and Kempton over 12f means he is bringing his A game to the track and a progressive profile. Forgetting his last run i fear most the Roger Charlton horse Laugharne, who has run badly twice this year but last year was considered good enough to run in a Group 1 race. If they have sorted him our he could be dangerous at a big price. 1 unit e/w Anglo Irish and 1 unit e/w Laugharne @ 28/1