Sandown’s second race on the card (14:25) was won last year by the David Menuisier team, and they could repeat the trick with the aptly-named History Writer. The three-year-old produced a solid performance to score here two starts ago, before catching the eye when sixth at Newmarket last time. An awkward break from the stalls cost him his chance that day and he gets the nod with the hope that the step up in trip unlocks some more improvement.
Take Cover was a fitting winner of last year’s Beverley Bullet. Like Linford Christie, he’s a sprinter that has got better with age, and the 11-year-old looks a good bet to successfully defend his crown against his younger rivals at 14:45. As you would expect from the race title, this will be fast and furious, and Take Cover will be ridden to try and dominate from the front.
He was no match for the best in the land in the Nunthorpe last week, finishing sixth, but was far from disgraced that day (beaten less than four lengths), and is a big threat now returned to Listed level.
Considering that Dr Marwan Koukash is planning to wear a thong if the well-fancied Magic Circle is triumphant in the Melbourne Cup in November, it is something of a relief that he doesn’t have a runner in the Listed Chester Stakes at his favourite track (15:15).
It may pay to take on the likely short-priced favourite Duretto with Here And Now. Ralph Beckett is perhaps better known for his ability at training fillies, but this gelding was a taking winner of a competitive two mile handicap at the Ebor meeting, embarrassing the exposed handicappers against him. He could be worth chancing in this higher grade at a track where he’s previously gone well.
The roll of honour for Sandown’s Group 3 Solario Stakes (15:35) boasts this year’s Derby winner Masar, and whilst this year’s renewal contains several nice prospects, it is likely that they will find Frankie Dettori’s mount Too Darn Hot to handle. The two-year-old oozed star potential when making a winning debut in a minor event at this course over a furlong further in August, being shaken up by his rider to ensure that he learned plenty.
His glamorous entries this autumn, which include the Group 1 Dewhurst, suggest that he is expected to take this step up in grade in his stride. Meanwhile, connections of Arthur Kitt will be hoping he runs better than the rhyming slang for his near-namesake Eartha Kitt!