Matt Chapman: I’m backing Frankie Dettori to make it a Magical opening day at York on Wednesday

Charlie Hills' Magical Memory has the Group 2 Duke of York Sprint at his mercy

The York Dante meeting usually provides the final pieces of the puzzle for the Epsom Oaks and Derby in June so there’s plenty to look forward to on the Knavesmire this week and plenty more chances to make Paddy miserable. That’s how I like to keep him.

I’m starting with the 2.10pm at York Wednesday, an extended 1m 2f handicap. It’s not going to be easy for top-weight PACIFY, but with a relatively compressed handicapped he’s the one to beat for the Ralph Beckett stable. A good second at Epsom last time, I have a feeling he will be dropped out by Fran Berry to come home fast and late.


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There’s an ultra tough 6f handicap at 2.40pm. I’ll have a few quid each-way on BOGART, who returns to York a well handicapped horse. He ran sixth in this event 12 months ago off a mark of 94 and was beaten less than three lengths. Now he’s on 88 for Kevin Ryan. We just have to hope stall 15 is a good draw.

The Group 2 Duke of York sprint is a cracker at 3.15pm, and sees the return of Twilight Son. MAGICAL MEMORY has had a run this season and gets 5lb from his main form rival. Charlie Hills’ sprinter is much improved and should go very close under Frankie Dettori.

Finally there’s the Group 3 Musidora at 3.45pm and the hope is there might be an Epsom Oaks contender lurking in the field. I’m not sure there is! I like FIREGLOW, who was beaten just over 4l by Minding in the 1,000 Guineas. Mark Johnston’s hope should stay this distance, and might be good enough with a bit more at the trip.

So best of luck on Day 1 at York. Here’s to some Yeeehaaas!

What do you think?