York Placepot: Thursday August 22

The Fugue is our lead selection in the Yorkshire Oaks

Day two of the York Ebor Festival is the target for our Placepot, with a fair-sized perm permitted with the pool likely to be so big.

"Had eight remained in the Yorkshire Oaks, there would have been a real temptation to bank on The Fugue."

13:55 - A sales race for two-year-olds is hardly the most gentle of openings. Experience and, given this course, speed are the most important factors to consider. Viva Verglas has the experience, speed and form, Oasis Town has already featured in a hurly-burly race having been third in the Super Sprint at Newbury, and Miracle of Medinah had been on the up prior to being pitched too deep at Glorious Goodwood last time. All three are drawn low or middle, but that's a minor concern.

14:30 - The Lowther looks about our best chance to squeeze a banker into our perm and stop it getting out of control. It's Lucky Kristale that we're putting our trust in: she's fighting out favouritism with J Wonder, but where that one has an eye-catching pedigree and greater scope for improvement, our selection has a significant edge in both experience and prior form, making her a more appealing Placepot prospect. 

15:05 - This entry on leg three was originally a eulogy to Wentworth, who looks destined for Group races in time, but now he has been taken out we're left with a more tricky proposition. We're still going to turn to Prince of Johanne as planned. He's a hard-bitten veteran of these events who hasn't been as in-and-out this year as his bare form figures might suggest, while one of his 'better' runs came over this C&D. Frog Hollow also makes the cut, as he's been on the up since joining David O'Meara and history tells us that O'Meara should keep getting the best out of him. Finally Smarty Socks, who has saved his best for the Knavesmire this year, gets in from the same mark he finished second off here last month. 

15:40 - Had eight remained in the Yorkshire Oaks, there would have been a real temptation to bank on The Fugue. As it is, Wild Coco's withdrawal has taken the decision out of our hands. The Fugue still goes in, as she's as good and as consistent (her Eclipse flop notwithstanding) as anything in the field, but she's joined by Secret Gesture, who has become something of a forgotten horse after defeat in the Oaks and German Oaks but still remains with some untapped potential. It's not as though Secret Gesture ran poorly on either occasion and she's quite an attractive Placepot proposition.

16:20 - William Haggas is the man we're placing our trust in where the Galtres Stakes is concerned. He's represented by a relatively unexposed pair in Lady Nouf and Our Obsession, the former having a good deal of sound form at this level and the latter having the sexy profile that could see her take another step forward for the step up to one and a half miles.

16:55 - Likely favourite Ghasabah in the closing leg simply doesn't have the experience to make her worthy of inclusion at such skinny odds, so we can leave her out. Dusky Queen is a better option, the fact she's a maiden misleading as she's been bumping into similarly progressive rivals of late in handicaps, while the money that came for her last time (when clear second to Shady McCoy) suggests that even rise in the weights shouldn't rule her out here. The strong-travelling Elle Woods' recent spurt of improvement might have come to an end, but she appeals as the type to cope well with the demands of a race like this, so there's no reason she can't run another sound race.

13:55 - 2, 5, 19
14:30 - 1
15:05 - 3, 10, 18
15:40 - 3, 7
16:20 - 10, 11
16:55 - 9, 17
= 72 lines

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