Friday, July 13, 2012

Two John Smith's for York...

Can you have too much of a good thing? Tomorrow's racing includes the Darley July Cup at Newmarket, the John Smith's Cup at York, the Weatherby's Super Sprint at Newbury and the chesterBET City Plate at Chester.

I've decided to focus on the two long distance races at York - the John Smith's Silver Cup at 2.25 over 14 furlongs and the John Smith's Stayers' Handicap at 4.45 over two miles. Both races pick up strands of form from the Northumberland Plate run at Newcastle two weeks ago; on that occasion I highlighted runners with previous NH form and I'm going to do something similar here.

The going is currently described as good to soft, soft in places.

Crackentorp runs in the Silver Cup and ran a cracker to finish second at odds of 16/1 in the Northumberland Plate; he carried nine stone off a handicap mark of 93 on that occasion but this time has been raised eight pounds and has 9-7 on his back. Motivado was beaten a distance in that same race while Blue Bajan, Lyric Street and Kiama Bay were all withdrawn on the day on account of the heavy ground; the last-named has since posted a decent effort to finish seventh, beaten four lengths, in the Old Newton Cup at Haydock. Michael Bell took the honours last year with Tactician - this time he saddles the only three-year-old in the field who is marked up favourite in the tissue.

I think Cesarewitch winner Never Can Tell would prefer better ground, a comment that also applies to Mount Athos who was fourth behind the aforementioned Ces winner and was withdrawn from the Coral Marathon at Sandown last Saturday where the ground was described as good to soft. The mare Western Pearl ran third in this last year at a big price and ran creditably to finish fifth behind Simenon in the Ascot Stakes at the Royal Ascot meeting while High Jinx doesn't have too many miles on the clock and apparently has the Ebor as his target so he'll be expected to show up well here. The one that catches my eye is the appropriately-named Stormy Weather. Formerly with Howard Johnson, the grey was highly tried on his first two runs over hurdles for Brian Ellison, in the Fighting Fifth at Newcastle and in the International Hurdle at Cheltenham last December. On his subsequent four visits to the track he has finished in the first two on each occasion and rates reasonable each-way value at around 14/1.   

In the Stayers' Handicap, those with previous NH form are Orsippus, Herostatus, Pokfulham, Bruslini, Jonny Delta, Mica Mika, Swinging Hawk and Red Jade. Brian Ellison's grey Bruslini has raced from the front in recent hurdle races before finishing third behind Cloudy Spirit over two miles two here in May. Orsippus was behind in fourth that day before going on to finish second at Ripon and then collect the Pontefract Cup three weeks ago (beating French Hollow who ran a stormer in the Northumberland Plate). Bruslini looks weighted to confirm the York form with Orsippus. Pokfulham looked to have a hard race when beating Rock Relief a nose on the heavy ground at Newcastle just over a fortnight ago while Herostatus had a long slog in the Catterick mud a mere three days ago.

Jonny Delta is an interesting one - as a four-year-old he finished seventh behind Steps To Freedom in the Aintree bumper - in front of subsequent Supreme Novices' Hurdle winner Cinders And Ashes. That form reads well - last time out Jonny was fourth behind Getabuzz (Fallon up) beaten just two lengths (with Red Jade further behind in seventh); he's two pounds better off here so the pairing look closely matched but jockey bookings are noted... Fallon rides Orsippus while Neil Farley claims five aboard Jonny Delta. A difficult race but I'll follow Fallon on Orsippus (Bruslini feared) and will consider a small rach-way interest in Jonny Delta if priced up around the 20/1 mark.

To finish, a dreamer's double - what price Brian Ellison's two greys, Stormy Weather and Bruslini...?

1 comment:

GeeDee said...

(Yet another) bad day at the office...

It hardly seems credible but the ground went against the selections; York missed heavy rain with the result the ground dried out - the going on the day was good, good to soft in places.

Stormy Weather (25/1) was done for toe three furlongs out in the Silver Cup and trailed in eighth behind Mount Athos (5/1).

Similarly Orsippus (4/1f) was outpaced three out, coming home fourth behind Very Good Day (8/1) while Jonny Delta (11/1) was never in the hunt, finishing eighth.