Ralph Beckett has been doing quite well in nurseries this season, with many running really well. Star Of Orion hitting the frame in a strong York nursery, where the winner followed up at Doncaster on Wednesday. William Bligh placed at Goodwood in what is usually a decent nursery.
Galah won a Thirsk nursery recently, while Zoffarelli won a Kempton nursery. All this suggests that Beckett has managed to get plenty of his two-year-olds well handicapped and MEU AMOR starts off in handicaps off a mark of 76.
I would be pretty sure that she is well treated off that mark. A £300,000 breeze up purchase, she showed plenty of promise on debut at Goodwood when slow away but staying on well at the finish.
The second from that race won next time out and wasn’t beaten far in a Group 3 to give that form some substance.
Meu Amor went to Pontefract for her second start and won nicely in a fair time.
She shaped like 7 furlongs would see her improve plenty again and the fact that she is entered in a Listed race later in the season would suggest that she will leave a mark of 76 well behind her.
Paddy is paying 4 places here and DIGITAL has far stronger claims than his price might suggest. Firstly, Kevin Ryan has a decent record in the race, with Repartee a close second in it last year, while The Great Heir won in 2018 and Morning Post in 2013.
Both of his winners had plenty of experience and had look exposed. The Great Heir had seven starts coming into this race and Morning Post six starts coming into the race. Cairn Island and Major Jumbo have decent claims for Ryan here also, but Digital has plenty of experience after four starts and his form is actually quite strong.
He was second on debut at Newcastle and the winner wasn’t disgraced in the Windsor Castle at Royal Ascot when sixth. Digital was then second here at Doncaster to Ubettabelieveit, who went on to win the Listed National Stakes on his next start. He was then touched off by Umm Kulthum in Thirsk and that horse placed in the Group 2 Lowther Stakes on her next start. And finally, Digital got off the mark at Musselburgh when beating the 96 rated, and Listed placed, Significantly.
Digital only has a rating of 83 and strictly on ratings has plenty to findb ut based on the Musselburgh win alone, he would look amazingly well treated and would be a near certainty to win a nursery off 83. The key here is the step up in trip to 6-and-a-half furlongs. There is plenty of stamina on the dam’s side and his striding data would suggest he will almost certainly improve for the step up in trip.
If he does, he is a massive player here and makes plenty of each way appeal with Paddy offering the extra place.
Joseph O’ Brien has his string in excellent form, and this is a big week for him with Galileo Chrome looking to have excellent claims in the St Leger and he has plenty of fancied runners over Irish Champions weekend.
PISTA might be able to get him off to a flier in the group racing this week, as she is progressing quickly after only making her debut in June. She did so much wrong on debut that day, losing a huge amount of ground at the start and shaping far better than the final position and distance beaten would suggest.
She was far more professional on her second start at Galway and was extremely impressive when winning by a wide margin.
That wasn’t a bad race as the third and fourth have won maidens since, while the second was just touched off on her next start also. Pista stepped up in both trip and grade on her last start and was impressive when coming with a strong late run to mow down the useful Sunchart – with Irish Derby third Dawn Patrol back in third.
My only concern for her would be that Snow is the only pace in the race and hopefully this won’t become tactical, as Pista is a strong stayer who would benefit for a strong pace. Believe In Love is a massive danger on the basis of her wide margin win at Newmarket last time, when she generated a huge time figure.
She is the one to beat on that run, but Pista might be able to progress past her.
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