York Racing Tips: Silvery Moon can get Dante meeting off to a bright start

Tony has two big-price fancies for day one of York's Dante meeting on Wednesday
Tony has two big-price fancies for day one of York's Dante meeting on Wednesday

York's three-day Dante meeting commences on Wednesday afternoon and our regular tipster Tony Calvin is back with a couple of big-price selections for you to consider on day one...

"Silvery Moon is the oldest horse in the race at 9yo and arguably the most exposed, but he is in form, and has conditions to suit, and he could just surprise. Back him at 21.020/1 or bigger in the 14:10."

If the Derby picture is looking increasingly murky after last week's trials - let's be honest, no-one has a clue, do they? - then at least everyone knows the score with the Oaks.

Basically, if 1,000 Guineas winner Minding stays, then she wins.

Horse racing is rarely straightforward though, and Minding does have a serious stamina question to prove, if not her brilliance, so the fillies lining up for the Musidora at 15:45 nare no forlorn Classic hopefuls just yet.

The obvious starting point is So Mi Dar, who beat the colts in the Epsom Derby trial, the form of which has been well and truly franked since. Runner-up Humphrey Bogart won at Lingfield on Saturday, while the third Viren's Army won the Dee Stakes at Chester last week - and both of those are set to be supplemented for the Derby at a cost of £75,000.

But the form horse in here is Fireglow, just over four lengths behind Minding at Newmarket at the start of the month and who is bred to be suited by the step up in trip.

And Ballydoyle muddies the waters by sending over Best In The World, unsuited by the ground and the track bias when soundly beaten at Navan on her reappearance. We have seen numerous times already this season, though, how it can pay to forgive the stable's horses one poor comeback run on bad ground.

In short, it's an interesting race but not a betting one.


Connections of Silvery Moon believe that he is best with some give in the ground, which he probably won't get here - though there is some rain forecast late Tuesday afternoon and tomorrow morning - and, anyway, the formbook says that he is perfectly at home on a fast surface.

Indeed, you could argue that his best efforts have come on good or quicker ground.

He has run well on his two starts this season, both in testing conditions, and the handicapper has left him on the same mark. And he has good course and distance form, too, including when beaten under four lengths into sixth in this race last season.

He is the oldest horse in the race at 9yo and arguably the most exposed, but he is in form, and has conditions to suit, and he could just surprise. Back him at 21.020/1 or bigger in the 14:10.

Master Of Finance finished second in this race last year and could never get into the race after a slow start at Chester last week, and it would be no shock whatsoever were this inconsistent sort to bounce back to form.

The interesting one is Spanish Squeeze, who Hugo Palmer reported to working well with Covert Love last month and who he believes to be well-handicapped. However, he hasn't been missed in the market, as a result, at odds of around 6-1, especially for a horse drawn 14 of 14.


I think Magical Memory is a very worthy favourite in the Duke Of York Stakes at 15:15 and I'm in no rush to oppose him. Or to back him as well at around the 3.7511/4 mark, to be honest, as that's a fair price, no more.

The bare form of his win in the Abernant on his return is nothing to get excited about but he travels likes a dream through his races, and he could easily stamp himself as the premier sprinter this season.

He was a short-head and ¾ length behind Twilight Son on his first venture into Group 1 company at Haydock last season and he is 5lb better off today and also has the benefit of a recent run.

You can give plenty of these a chance though - only 8lb separates nine of these on official ratings, and Danzeno is obviously a player - so I am inclined to sit this one out at the prices.


As you'd expect of a 19-runner 6f handicap at 14:40 the race is incredibly competitive and my short-list basket for the race wouldn't even entitle you to line up in the "10 items or less" queue in the supermarket.

Highland Acclaim is already 4lb lower than when fifth in the Portland in September and has run some of his better races here, Bogart has good course form and is another who has slipped down to a very workable mark, while Zanetto is very interesting on his first start for John Quinn after being bought for 50,000 gns at the Sales in October. And the horse ran really well first time up last season, too.

However, I bet Quinn wishes previous handler Andrew Balding hadn't run the horse in a small-field conditions race at Yarmouth last September, for which he went up 6lb.

I went round in circles here - Yeeoow was another to catch my eye - but I decided to put up Zanetto to small stakes at 23.022/1.

The Yarmouth run against much higher-rated horses was not the best idea from a handicapping point of view but he did run well there- too well, in fact - and he had been very competitive off slightly lower marks than this at the start of last season on good and fast ground.


In the RUK races, London Protocol was considered in the 16:20 at odds at around 20-1 and I see that my old mucker Odeon - it is two years since I tipped him to win the Dante, in which he was beaten only 3 lengths by The Grey Gatsby - is now down to a mark of just 80 in the 17:20.

But I will just stick to the two bets earlier in the card. Good luck.

You can read my tips for Thursday's races behind the link.

Recommended Bets

Back Silvery Moon at 21.020/1 in the 14:10 at York
Back Zanetto at 23.022/1 in the 14:40 at York

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