A Vintage 2,000 Guineas …

May 2nd, 2017 | Marten's Current Racing Diary

I have to say that I am really excited by this year’s 2,000 Guineas.

We have had some truly sensational winners of the race in past years, none more so than Frankel in 2011, while I can remember El Gran Senor beating Chief Singer, Lear Fan and Rainbow Quest – probably the best 2,000 Guineas field of my lifetime.

Tactically we are in for a fascinating contest. From what I have seen so far, Barney Roy, Eminent and Churchill are strong galloping types that lengthen rather than quicken. By contrast Andre Fabre’s French challenger Al Wukair has a turn of foot. That doesn’t mean that he has the best chance of the four, but tactically his rider will need to be aware that he may be chasing a strong pace and would not want to be too far out of his ground.

I have seen horses left with too much to do in this race in the past, unable to catch a rival that kicks for home approaching the Dip.

The 1,000 Guineas has a more open look to it. The two that interest me most are Fair Eva, for whom there has been sustained market confidence for a while now, and Talaayeb. The latter has done some excellent work at home but her pedigree points to her being more an Oaks than Guineas filly.

I will have much more to say about the meeting in my Online Preview, which will be available to read on Friday evening (see Online Shop for further details).

Looking back to the last few days, Afjaan impressed me when beating Oh This Is Us at Haydock last week. The son of Henrythenavigator came away very smoothly under a confident ride to win going away, looking to my eyes like a horse about to break into Group class company.

I believe the next stop may be the Victoria Cup, for which he will be rated around the 108 to 110 mark having on here off 100.