At present, it seems as though every weekend plays host to a number of stellar horse racing meets across the length and breadth of the country.
This weekend is no exception to this rule, with 12 events scheduled, including a number of outstanding flat race events, one of which is the hotly-anticipated Cambridgeshire Meeting at Newmarket.
Here, we’ll take a look at some of the best meetings and racecards from the upcoming weekend, while appraising the most likely runners and riders.
Newmarket – Friday, 28th September
We start with the second day of the Cambridge Meeting at Newmarket, which will take place on Friday.
There’s a number of exciting Group two races scheduled to take place here, including the Shadwell Rockfel Stakes. This is a Class I race that will unfold over seven thrilling furlongs, with the lucky winner in line to win the £56,710 first prize,
The early favourite here is the 7/2 shot Yourtimeisnow, trained by the experienced Roger Varian. The two-year old horse has completed four races over six furlongs to date, winning the last two at Newbury and Salisbury respectively and showcasing tremendous pedigree.
With this in mind, she’s likely to stay the distance here and represents outstanding value at least as an each-way bet.
Aiden O’Brien’s two-year old filly Just Wonderful is also likely to compete here, particularly following her impressive win in a 1m Group Three race at the Curragh at the beginning of September. Although she was found out somewhat at Group One level while finishing 7th at the Curragh 10 days ago, she can’t be ruled out given her talent and overall pedigree.
If you’re in the market for more of an outside wager, look no further than Richard Hannon’s two-year old Canton Queen. This runner offers far greater value than a starting price of 8/1 would suggest, having won impressively on her second start at Leicester and emerged from an exceptionally high quality stable.
She’ll need to improve significantly here, but her fledgling career has been marked by outstanding progress to date.
Newmarket – Saturday, 29th September
The prestigious Cambridgeshire Meeting will reach a dramatic conclusion in Newmarket on Saturday, with eight superb flat races scheduled,including the Group One Juddmonte Cheveley Park Stakes.
A total of 11 runners will compete over six furlongs for a winners’ cheque worth £174,758, with several of the UK’s leading trainers in contention for the ultimate prize.
While there’s some high quality horses running here, the build-up has been dominated by the ongoing rivalry between Pretty Pollyanna and Signora Cabello. These two filies did battle during the Group One Prix Morny at Deauville last time out, with Pollyanna being chased home by the John Quinn-trained Signora Cabello in a truly superb race.
There’s no doubt that the two-year old Pollyanna, who is trained by Michael Bell, will start as the initial favourite, with bookies offering an average starting price of 5/4. Aside from her exceptional win at Deauville, she’s also recorded victories at Newmarket and Yarmouth since her debut in the middle of June and shows no sign of letting up here.
Signora Cabello is more than capable of avenging her defeat at Deauville, however, as her hard-fought runners-up spot followed four consecutive wins on the flat. This included a victory in a Listed race at York when the filly started at odds of 25/1, and an outstanding win in the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot.
The stage is certainly set for a thrilling rematch, one looks likely to serve as the highlight of the Cambridgeshire Meeting as a whole.
Epsom Downs – Sunday, 30th September
Sunday is a much quieter affair for the sport of kings, with just 2 horse race meetings scheduled to take place.
The pick of these is at Epsom Downs, which will play host to seven flat races including the hotly anticipated Investec Conditions Stakes. This Class II race will feature a total of 15 runners, each competing for a first prize of £12,450.
Trainer Mark Johnston will be confident of the win here, as he has five outstanding runners active in the field. These include the two-year old colt Massam, who has won his last two flat outings at Newcastle and Yarmouth and is likely to start as one of the favourites this time around.
The outstanding Arctic Sound is also likely to be there or thereabouts at the end of the race, with this two-year old colt having won three of five flat races since his debut including a superb victory at Doncaster last time out.
If the winner is going to come from outside Johnston’s stable, we reckon that Richard Hannon’s horse Flying Dragon is one of the most likely contenders. He’s certainly raced himself into form of late, following a third place finish at Ffos Las at the beginning of September with an excellent win at Sandown last time out.