Bred in the purple – a Night Of Thunder colt who is a half-brother to three winners, including the top-class Blue Point – Desert Destination shaped encouragingly on his debut at Salisbury last month, running on well from a poor position, and, upped in trip, he duly proved a different proposition at Chepstow last time, finding only another well-bred improver too strong as he missed out in the final strides. His opening mark looks a workable one and is taken to make his handicap debut a winning one.
Society Lion not only took the sort of step forward that his pedigree suggested he might have when second at Doncaster last month, but he also shaped really well, impressing most with his change of pace to come from last to first, even if then seen off only by an even more unexposed rival, and he didn’t need to improve on that effort to go one better at Goodwood last time. He got the first run on the second at Goodwood but won readily enough and is still one to be very positive about. A 5 lb rise for that win probably underestimates him and, with improvement anticipated, he has a big chance of going in again provided he takes to the surface.
Mochalov doesn’t have the best strike rate and has been proving a little more miss that hit this year, but he looked as though back in good form when fourth at Lingfield last time, shaping better than the bare result suggests. Waited with, Jane Chapple-Hyam’s charge was making headway when denied a clear run through on the home turn. He switched approaching the final furlong and stayed on, nearest at the finish, but the damage was already done. This drop back in trip may help, with both of his victories coming over seven furlongs, including one at this venue, and he is expected to make his presence felt at a big enough price.
Timeform’s Top 3 @ Chelmsford on Saturday
Our CHEAT SHEET for the final day of the York Ebor Festival
Timeform’s race-by-race guide to Saturday at York
Mick Fitz’s Lucky 15 for Saturday’s ITV action
Matt Chapman’s 9 to shine at Sandown and York
Jason Weaver’s pick of the punts for Saturday’s Sandown and York racing