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Golden Rules showed fairly useful form in three starts as a three-year-old, running out an easy winner when last seen at Chelmsford in October. There should be even better to come from him as a four-year-old, a physically imposing specimen who has been gelded since last season. He also possesses a smashing pedigree which implies that time and distance will see him to best advantage, being by Golden Horn out of a sister to the Group 1 winner Magic Wand.
Admittedly, an opening BHA mark of 92 isn’t lenient judged on the form Golden Rules has shown to date, but there’s a strong belief that we’ve only scratched the surface of his potential. He can make a winning reappearance before going on to bigger and better things for John and Thady Gosden.
Churchill Bay ran no sort of race on his final two-year-old start at York, but he is clearly better than that, as he showed when second on his previous outing at Ascot. He disputed the lead on that occasion and stuck to his task well when tackled inside the final furlong, ultimately passing the post just a short head behind the winner. That maiden could hardly have worked out better with plenty of winners coming out of it, including the fourth Minzaal, who went on to land the Gimcrack Stakes.
Churchill Bay was full value for a fairly useful performance, running to a level which identifies him as very much the one to beat in this line-up. He has been given plenty of time to recover from his flop at York (gelded since) and rates a confident selection to get off the mark.
Broughtons Flare’s recent form figures don’t inspire much confidence, but there is no doubt he is up to winning a race of this nature if on a going day. He is certainly a well-handicapped horse, now 11 lb lower in the weights than when recording his last success at Kempton in February 2020. A lot of water has passed under the bridge since then, but it’s still early days for the Mark Loughnane yard which he joined during the winter. It’s also worth pointing out that this represents a weaker race than those he often contests, while the application of first-time cheekpieces could just give him the competitive edge he needs to play a leading role here at rewarding odds.
Timeform tips summary:
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