Crusade can build on debut success with Champagne moment
15:00 Doncaster - Back Royal Crusade @ 4.507/2
The Group 2 Champagne Stakes is often a contest I look forward to, and this time around is no different with a decent field.
Richard Hannon's Threat clearly sets a top standard with a series of excellent runs already. His second in the Coventry earlier in the season lays down a marker, but he improved on that run with his Gimcrack victory last time out over 6f. He is a serious 2,000 Guineas contender, so his rivals will have to be of a high standard to beat him.
I am hoping Charlie Appleby's Royal Crusade is the one, and we can back him at around 4.507/2 on the Exchange.
He won on debut in taking fashion at Newmarket despite a tardy start. He was warm down the neck and darted out to his right, but despite that, he cruised into contention on the wide outside and finished the race off well like an above average horse.
The Shamardal colt is sticking to 7f here, but he doesn't look short of pace. Timeform hold a large 'P' to his rating, and whilst he does have plenty to find with Threat, that rival has had a chance to run to a decent figure.
Bayroot deserves another chance to show what he is capable of
16:45 Doncaster - Back Bayroot @ 4.507/2
Bayroot is a little project of mine, and I am happy to give him another chance in the 16:45. Although a couple more defeats might see him go down the Spanish City route.
He has had excuses this term. His latest run at Goodwood was over 7f and a drop down in distance from his previous 1m efforts. I am not sure he is quick enough for the seven, and the track didn't suit him either.
I backed him at Newmarket in a good race previously. I thought he would have made the running, but he was held up off a steady pace and he was caught out by the lack of a gallop.
Bayroot could be still be well treated from 97 and reverting back to 1m will suit, especially at a track like Donny. I am hoping he makes the running too, and he does have the Town Moor master on board in Andrea Atzeni.
*Click here for more news ahead of Doncaster's St Leger