Another chance for Taajub

September 4th, 2015 | Ian Carnaby's Racing News

I was quite pleased with the main selection last week, Shared Equity running well all the way to finish a good third in a very intricate Goodwood handicap. True, the handicapper knows all about him but I feel sure Jedd O’Keefe will find something similar, perhaps at Doncaster or York. Richard Fahey won the race with Rene Mathis but I made a note of stable-companion Withernsea, who was trapped behind horses for most of the way and had no chance of troubling the principals when finally finding daylight on the outside.

We were on the mark with Kodi Bear and Forgotten Wish at fairly short prices. It is good to see Clive Cox with another classy miler, though Kodi Bear will need to improve again to trouble the best in the QEII Stakes at Ascot. Forgotten Wish was another winner to emerge from the fillies’ maiden at the Glorious meeting.

Bank Holiday Monday was the best day on the line for quite a while, with English Summer yet another winner for Fahey in the amateur riders’ ‘Derby’ at Epsom and Heartsong paying us out at 10/1 at the third time of asking in the five-furlong handicap at Chepstow. Both were remarkable value, the latter touching 12/1 on course and English Summer available at 2/1 or better during the morning.

This Saturday looks something of a minefield for punters and I have no strong thoughts about the Group 1 Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock. I can see Mattmu vying for a place and old Gordon Lord Byron is no back number, while Twilight Son remains unbeaten and may take the step-up in class in his stride. It does not look a betting medium to me.

The Betfred TV Be Friendly Handicap is just as tricky and the big problem here concerns the Mark Johnston-trained duo Midlander and Indescribable. This is the familiar Johnston conundrum; both were in very good form a few weeks ago, both have tossed in a couple of ordinary efforts, either or both could bounce back here. The pair of them will start at double figures and the only way to play is to have a small amount to win on both.

There was a time last year when I thought James Fanshawe’s HORS DE COMBAT would take high rank among the milers. I still believe there is some improvement in him and the stable is coming into form, so he is worth a small wager in the opening Group 3 Superior Mile at the Lancashire track. Oisin Murphy is a good booking.

At Ascot I shall wait until the last, where old TAAJUB has yet another chance. His supporters must be at their wits’ end but five furlongs here is what suits him best and these look the sort of Class 3 regulars he may be able to beat. I’d like to see him come up the stands’ side on the rain-softened ground and he may be an each-way price. He is not one to call the bank on but Peter Crate’s sprinters are running quite well and Taajub will have very few better opportunities.