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SPIRIT OF BERMUDA blotted her copybook by refusing to race after getting upset in the stalls at Redcar earlier in the season, but that was evidently a one-off as she has won both her starts since. Her latest win at Newmarket backed up by a good timefigure, she gets the vote to complete the hat-trick.
Having won at Leicester the time before, Spirit of Bermuda improved again to overcome a 6lbs rise in the weights at Newmarket and she needed to show a good attitude as she got to the front under pressure from some way out. That win by three-quarters of a length from Rising Star has been boosted since by the runner-up winning at Musselburgh last weekend.
MUSIC SOCIETY has been in rude health this season yet can race off a 4lbs lower mark than when going down by the narrowest of margins at York last Saturday in the Sky Bet Dash and he is fancied to gain a deserved success. He shaped very well in going down by just a short head to Venturous, doing everything right under a waiting ride only to succumb to a rival whose challenge was delayed even later.
Music Society had suffered another narrow defeat earlier this month in the Scottish Stewards’ Cup at Hamilton after not getting the clearest of runs, but he had better luck when a narrow winner at Pontefract back in June under Cam Hardie – who is on board again for the first time since.
MY FRANKEL was quickly back on the up in the Old Newton Cup at Haydock four weeks ago, shaping as if this longer trip will suit, so he could be the answer as he steps up to a mile-and-three-quarters for the first time.
The four-year-old doesn’t seem to have been the easiest to train for Sir Michael Stoute, shaping as if amiss on a couple of occasions. However, he gained a third career win when successful at Kempton in April and his latest start at Haydock showed he may not have stopped improving yet. Under a change of tactics which saw him dropped out last, he stayed on to be beaten just over three lengths into third behind Alounak and races off the same mark again here.
WONDERFUL TONIGHT was denied the chance to run in last Saturday’s King George at Ascot where conditions were on the firm side, but missing Ascot may well have been a blessing in disguise as she would have had her work cut out against Derby winner Adayar. But, with the ground much more in her favour here, she looks a cut above the majority of the other fillies and mares she faces in the Lillie Langtry Stakes – even with her 3lbs penalty.
Wonderful Tonight is proven at this longer trip after winning her first Group 1 over the same distance in last season’s Prix de Royallieu, while the form of her latest success – an impressive win over Broome in the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot – is working out really well.
HURRICANE IVOR is a sprinter on the rise and was probably unlucky not to follow up his Sandown success at Ascot when drawn on the wrong side, a performance strongly suggesting he’s ahead of his mark. He began his career in France where he won two of his first three starts before his form levelled out, but the switch to William Haggas this season has revived his fortunes no end.
After something of a controversial first win in Britain through no fault of his own – he dead-heated at Sandown after the original photo-finish verdict was given against him. He then fared much the best of those on the far side at Ascot, when going down by a short head to Significantly who raced on the opposite side of the track.
KHANJAR has the advantage of a prior run over most of his rivals in this maiden and can be expected to make above-average improvement from his own debut, which came at Ascot earlier in the month. Sent off at 5/1, the William Haggas-trained Khanjar was the best-backed of the newcomers in the novice contest at Ascot, but while clearly in need of the experience, he shaped with a good deal of encouragement.
After being steadied at the start and not getting the clearest of runs over a furlong out, Khanjar kept on for a never-dangerous fourth. He was three lengths behind the winner Atrium but just a length behind runner-up Flying Secret, who he can get the better of this time if improving as expected.
OVERWRITE contests a wide-open finale to the meeting, but a chance is taken on him to go one better than he did in the same contest for apprentices last year. He is 6lbs lower in the weights than 12 months ago and has also dropped to a lower than mark than for his latest success, which came in a better-class handicap at Newmarket’s Craven meeting in the spring when he got the better of Oh This Is Us by a head. Typically for a Mark Johnston horse, Overwrite has been kept busy since and has run respectably on occasions.
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