Ebor: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide

York stand
The Ebor is now one of the most lucrative handicaps in the world.

Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to Saturday's Ebor at York, and pick out their 1-2-3...

"Remains with potential and much better expected..."

Timeform on Ben Vrackie

1. Withhold (Roger Charlton/Jason Watson)
Clearly not the easiest to train but a very smart performer nonetheless, landing his third big prize in as many seasons after nine months off/breathing operation in Marsh Cup at Newbury (2m, by one and three quarter lengths from Billy Ray, finding plenty) last time. Up 6 lb now but folly to rule out.

2. Wells Farhh Go (Tim Easterby/David Allen)
Lightly-raced sort who returned from injury to win listed event at Newmarket in June, and best not judged too harshly on latest run in Goodwood Cup, racing freely in a clear lead. Goes well at this track (two-time winner) but has been done no favours by the handicapper now entering this sphere.

3. Red Verdon (Ed Dunlop/Shane Foley)
Bounced back to form after eight weeks off to win Silver Cup over C&D (by head from Gold Mount) last time, showing greater resolution than the runner-up in the finish. On a fair mark back in a handicap if able to reproduce that effort.

4. King's Advice (Mark Johnston/Joe Fanning)
Enjoying remarkable season, recording an eighth win when landing 14-runner handicap (by a neck from Outbox, typically proving game) at Goodwood last time. Promoted to favourite for this race as a result, and this game sort seems sure to make another bold bid under a 4 lb penalty.

5. Weekender (John Gosden/Graham Lee)
Won minor event at Chelmsford in May for second successive year, and respectable two and three quarter lengths fourth to Red Verdon in Silver Cup at York last time, faring best of those ridden prominently. Runner-up in this race 12 months ago from 1 lb higher, so has to be considered.

6. Raymond Tusk (Richard Hannon/Jamie Spencer)
Successful three times in 2018, notably Gran Premio del Jockey Club at Milan, and best effort this season when second in Sagaro Stakes at Ascot (three and three quarter lengths behind Dee Ex Bee) in May. Faced stiff task in Ascot Gold Cup last time, and return to this shorter trip in his favour.

7. Raheen House (William Haggas/James Doyle)
Made a solid start for this yard, finishing runner-up to Gold Mount in listed race over C&D before producing another creditable effort when head third to Red Verdon in Silver Cup over same C&D last time. Will be seen to better advantage back off a stronger gallop which makes him of interest here.

8. Prince of Arran (Charlie Fellowes/Stevie Donohoe)
Won handicap at Meydan and Group 3 Lexus Handicap at Flemington in 2018. Shaped as if better for the run when last of five to Desert Encounter in Glorious Stakes at Goodwood last time, weakening over a furlong out, and entitled to strip fitter now.

9. Max Dynamite (Willie Mullins/Ronan Whelan)
Creditable third in Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, and ended long losing run in minor event at Killarney (easily by three and three quarter lengths from Lustrous Light, asserting approaching final furlong) last time. Not the performer he once was, but still merits respect.

10. Mekong (Sir Michael Stoute/Ryan Moore)
Quickly left disappointing run in listed race over C&D behind when runner-up in a similar event at Sandown last time, though he was very tardy from the stalls and there is a concern building that he isn't straightforward (dam went wrong way temperamentally).

11. True Self (Willie Mullins/Donnacha O'Brien)
Completed four-timer in listed race at Gowran in May, and finished second in Pinnacle Stakes at Haydock (three lengths behind Klassique) in June. Seemed amiss when dropped away in Stanerra Stakes at Leopardstown last time, but type to quickly bounce back. Not obviously well handicapped.

12. Red Galileo (Saeed bin Suroor/Cieren Fallon (5))
Smart handicapper who won at Newmarket (by two and a quarter lengths from Speedo Boy) in June, but went in snatches when creditable three and a half lengths eighth to Who Dares Wins in Northumberland Plate at Newcastle last time, keeping on when short of room final furlong. Can go well again.

13. Baghdad (Mark Johnston/P. J. McDonald)
Won at Newmarket in May and Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot (by short head from Ben Vrackie) in June. Well-backed when only three and three quarter lengths third to Desert Encounter in Glorious Stakes at Goodwood last time, but stilly potentially well treated back in a handicap.

14. Kelly's Dino (Karl Burke/Ben Curtis)
Won Old Newton Cup at Haydock in July and also won handicap at Newmarket last time by short head from Corelli, just holding on. Carries 4 lb penalty now but clearly at the top of his game.

15. Ben Vrackie (John Gosden/Frankie Dettori)
Tall colt who finished second in Duke of Edinburgh Stakes (Handicap) at Royal Ascot (short head behind Baghdad) in June, and possibly found race coming too soon when well beaten by King's Advice in Bet365 Trophy at Newmarket last time. Remains with potential and much better expected.

16. Desert Skyline (David Elsworth/Gerald Mosse)
Smart performer at best, but once again left the impression he'd be well suited by return to 2m when five and three quarter lengths seventh to King's Advice at Goodwood last time, never landing a blow.

17. Mustajeer (Ger Lyons/Colin Keane)
Finished second in Vintage Crop Stakes at Navan in April, and took time to get going when three and a quarter lengths fifth to Twilight Payment in Curragh Cup last time, never nearer. Finished fourth in this race last year from same mark, so has each-way claims once more.

18. Barsanti (Roger Varian/Andrea Atzeni)
Won listed race at Ascot in 2018, but winless sincem and only five and a half lengths third to Wells Farhh Go in first-time cheekpieces in listed race at Newmarket last time. Goes in first-time blinkers now.

19. Dramatic Queen (William Haggas/Daniel Tudhope)
Smart performer who won Bronte Cup at York (by half a length from Enbihaar) in May. Finished second in Lancashire Oaks at Haydock (neck behind Enbihaar) in July, but well below form last time, possibly amiss. Type to bounce back.

20. Making Miracles (Mark Johnston/Jason Hart)
Smart handicapper who won at Ripon in April and Chester Cup (by six lengths from Who Dares Wins) in May. Run best excused at Newbury last time given how busy he'd been and not ruled out after a short break. Sometimes slowly away.

21. Cleonte (Andrew Balding/Silvestre de Sousa)
Won Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot (by one and a quarter lengths from Pallasator) in June. Finished four and a half lengths third to Falcon Eight in listed race at Sandown last time, keeping on. Should be suited better by this test.

22. The Grand Visir (Ian Williams/Jim Crowley)
Smart handicapper who won Ascot Stakes at Royal Ascot (by one and a quarter lengths from Buildmeupbuttercup) in June, and finished creditable seven lengths seventh to Withhold in JLT Cup at Newbury last time, ideally needing stiffer test. That again a concern here.


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