4.15 York – Nicklaus
York has some nice races on Friday and one that is likely to receive a little less attention than the high-grade affairs is the 7 furlong, 2-year-old maiden. There are a number of lightly raced individuals who have the potential to step forward significantly from their first or second racecourse appearances, and the market is fairly wide open. We look a little further down the betting for our selection and fancy that the William Haggas trained Nicklaus looks overpriced. The once raced son of Exceed and Excel was well backed on debut at Newmarket, but didn’t perform to expectations. However, the fact that he was supported by connections indicates that the juvenile could be plenty better than he has shown so far.
Nicklaus was backed on debut and he did virtually everything wrong in the race. The horse raced over 6 furlongs and pulled hard early. Once the pace quickened, the son of Exceed and Excel was spent and he was quickly outpaced. That effort came 8 weeks ago, which is encouraging, as the Haggas team have had nearly two months to work on settling the horse. He is likely to be a different proposition this time around and the 7 furlong trip should suit better based on pedigree.
William Haggas does very well with his 2-year olds when they have their first run and are then given 43-90 days off before their second run; 16/53 (30%) for £75 LSP, with the representatives scoring 50% more frequently than they are expected to based on the starting prices. There is some stiff competition with other runners in the field having shown better form to date, but Nicklaus could be a big improver and is backed at odds of +850 with BetVictor.
7.45 Goodwood – Sheikspear
Sheikspear heads the betting for the 7 furlong, Class 5 handicap at Goodwood and with good reason. Ed De Giles’ inmate scored at Kempton last time out and the 3-year-old Bahamian Bounty colt may have more to come with just seven starts under his belt. Bettors can currently obtain odds of +300 with BetVictor which seem more than fair and the horse may go off closer to +200 by race time.
Sheikspear ran three very solid races at the back end of 2016 for Joseph Tuite and he was allotted a mark of 75. The horse moved yards in May to Ed De Giles and it didn’t look like a promising beginning, as he was beaten out of sight at Windsor on stable debut, finishing 18 lengths last. Showed that run to be all wrong when scoring at Chepstow next time out, winning at Chepstow. Sheikspear made all that day and showed a game attitude to repel all challengers. Went to Newbury and was stepped up to 7 furlongs next time out but found trouble in running and things didn’t work out, with the colt eventually finishing third. Sheikspear got back to winning form last time out when scoring at Kempton over 7 furlongs. He switches back to turf at Goodwood which is a track which can favour front runners, and he could keep on improving.
Ed De Giles does very well with his horses who competed on the all-weather last time out and are switching to the turf; 24/155 (15%) for a £47 LSP. Perhaps he has good grass gallops at home that the horses prefer working on – either way, the stats don’t lie.
16:15 York – Nicklaus to win
Friday 25th August
19:45 Goodwood – Sheikspear
Friday 25th August