WhichBookie racing analyst Will Smith provides a preview and an ante-post each-way selection for the Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday 25th September.
|Mr Excellency||17/2||each-way (3 places)
|Duke Of Hazzard||11/1||each-way (4 places)
Date of Tips: 28/08/2021
Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (08:25 28/08/2021) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.
One of those mish-mash Saturdays today, which proliferate the summer in between the big festivals, and one that many will pass over in favour of the bigger days.
But it’s days like this that other elements get their day in the sun – from slightly smaller tracks like Beverley, who have their feature day, highlighted by the always interesting and high-quality Beverley Bullet card, and also many sets of connections who will have targeted races away from the big ones.
Today’s first selection comes in the feature race of the day – tote Celebration Mile at 3.35 at Goodwood, and it fits the criteria of a horse who has surely been targeted at today all season.
Duke Of Hazzard has a record of 3 wins and a second from 5 starts on the Sussex Downs, including a win in this race in 2019. The only blip came in last year’s renewal on unsuitably soft ground.
At 11/1 with Sky Bet, who offer 4 places each-way on the feature Group 2, I can understand why Duke Of Hazzard is a fairly unconsidered double figure price, but don’t agree with the reasons.
The presence of the brilliant, globetrotting and sparingly campaigned Benbatl will scare many away, but he isn’t getting any younger and has never experienced Goodwood before.
While the three-year-olds will have their supporters too, but Chindit has also never set hoof on the downs at Goodwood, and given he didn’t handle the undulations of Newmarket, there’d be a worry that the downhill sections won’t suit him, and I also have a sneaky suspicion he’s best at 7f.
While Mutasaabeq is good on his day, but proving to be a bit of an enigma, and again Goodwood might not be sure to suit.
Goodwood definitely will suit Perotto, and if I were having a second bullet in this, then he would be the one, but stall 9 puts me off a little. Stuck on a limb on the outside at the 1m start, with the camber at that point falling away from the rail, he could easily lose costly lengths on his rivals.
All season long, Duke Of Hazzard has shaped as if he’s about to burst into life, and none more so than at York last time, where he faded late over 1m1f, but shaped very well behind the upwardly mobile Real World.
Alloted the plumb draw in stall 1, he can gain a good early position tracking the pace without using up too much petrol, and at 11/1 each-way with Sky Bet, he is notably over-priced to continue his love affair with the idiosyncratic charms of Goodwood.
Elsewhere, as mentioned, Beverley put on their feature day and the Bullet itself looks a typically high quality and competitive renewal. So, I’m looking earlier on the card for an opportunity, and it comes in the opening race – William Hill Silver Cup Handicap at 2.05.
Mr Excellency is one of two Mark Johnston-trained horses in the race, and if you can forgive his Goodwood run last time, when he went off too hard on the front, then there’s no way he should be the outsider of the seven strong field.
At 17/2 each-way with Betfred, who offer 3 places crucially, Mr Excellency can continue his improvement, which was on a sharp upward curve before Goodwood. Also, he may only face competition for the lead from long-absent stablemate March Law, so hopefully the two Johnston-trained runners are gifted an advantage from the outset.