There’s a fest of TV action on Saturday and Newbury hosts a fantastic card with the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes at 3.30pm the feature.
Godolphin have been mopping up this contest of late – winning it in three of the last four seasons. They throw three darts at the board again this year with Dutch Connection, Toscanini and Ribchester.
Last season’s 2,000 Guineas and St James’ Palace Stakes winner Galileo Gold is making his seasonal debut and for that reason I’ll take Richard Fahey’s Ribchester to win.
He was third in a Group 1 at Meydan in March and should strip fitter for that run now.
We start with the Aston Park Stakes at 1.50pm at Newbury and there are a couple of Group 1 winners dropping down in grade to this Group 3 contest.
My Dream Boat won the Group 1 Prince of Wales’ Stakes over 10f on soft ground at Royal Ascot last season and I fancy Clive Cox’s runner to bounce back to winning ways here.
He’ll love the ground, should appreciate the step up in trip to 1m 4f and was had a decent pipe-opener when third on debut behind Ulysses and Deauville at Sandown in April.
Chemical Charge has yoyo-ed between Ger Lyons and current trainer Ralph Beckett in his career and his very consistent. He’s been fitted with a first-time visor and can hit the frame.
Springer in the market
The Carnarvon Stakes over 6f at 2.20pm sees Simmie return to action for new trainer Karl Burke. She was last seen beating Precieuse at Chantilly on very soft ground and that one went on to win the French 1000 Guineas at Chantilly. Simmie could be a real springer in the market and watch for market support for the Frankie Dettori-ridden Barrington, who is highly thought of by connections.
The 1m 2f London Gold Cup at 2.55pm is always an informative contest and has been won by some really good horses in the past like Time Test, Cannock Chase and Al Kazeem.
Mark Johnson’sTime To Study holds some pretty fancy entries and could be the real ‘improver’ in this field.
He’s already won at Chelmsford and Carlisle and is taken to score here at the expense of recent winner Mister Blue Sky.
At Newmarket, The Queen’s Call To Mind was all the rage when making a winning debut at Newbury and I’ll take him to carry on the winning run even though he has a bit to find on the book in the 1m 2f Listed Fairway Stakes.
Larchmont Lad finished ninth to Churchill in the 2000 Guineas for Richard Hannon and sets the standard in the 7f King Charles Listed contest at 2.40pm.
However, Andrew Balding’s team are on fire and his Beat The Bank can bring up the hat-trick under Fran Berry after wins over course and distance at HQ last time and Dundalk before that.
In the 6f Sprint Trophy at 3.15pm, Nautical Heaven can gain quick compensation for his win in the race that was voided at Chelmsford last time.