Betfair Ambassador is throwing three darts at Newbury's Spring Cup on Saturday, get his views on their chances and his other Saturday runners...
"Humbert is the most obvious contender of the three, and has done precious little wrong in his life. Aside from when he was drawn on the wrong side in the big sales race at the Curragh, he's never finished out of the first two."
No reason why Humbert shouldn't improve again
Humbert is the most obvious contender of the three, and has done precious little wrong in his life. Aside from when he was drawn on the wrong side in the big sales race at the Curragh, he's never finished out of the first two. He's phenomenally genuine, loves soft ground, and this has been the plan since he was second in the Spring Mile at Doncaster.
Genuine horses get no respite from the handicapper, and he's gone up again in the weights, but he's still lightly raced and there's no reason why he shouldn't be improving, so he goes there with a good shout.
Humbert is one of the pace angles in the race, and while he's drawn high, it's encouraging that a lot of the fancied horses are drawn on his side of the track, so I hope it's no disadvantage. The other pair will possibly need to drop in from lower draws, but I don't think it will be a problem for them.
Drop in trip should suit Star Archer
Star Archer, of the three, is the one I've had the highest hopes for, and he's the one I've always thought would be a stakes performer having won his maiden by six lengths over this trip as a juvenile.
He's much better than he's shown the last twice, needing a stronger pace at Kempton on his penultimate start, and then we had use too much of him from the draw at Lingfield, and he raced keenly as a result.
I think coming back to a mile will give him more of a chance to settle, and of getting a solid pace. We know he likes cut in the ground, and it will be very interesting to see how he gets on.
Mazyoun expected to improve for this run
Mazyoun was due to run over seven furlongs at Newmarket during the week, but he was a bit clumsy in his stable and knocked a joint which meant we had to take him out.
I wanted to get a run into him over seven with an eye on the Victoria Cup at Ascot with him, but we've had to change plans slightly. Of my three, I think he will come on most for the run.
Soft ground possibly the key for Gododdin
He's a horse we always liked last year, but he disappointed us twice. I feel he's grown up and strengthened a lot, and he's been working with nice horses.
He did a good bit of work the other morning on softish ground, and with Camelot producing a few winners recently with cut underfoot, I wonder if that might be the key. He's ready to start, and appears ready to do himself justice, so I hope he can do just that.
Handicapper hasn't been lenient with Pepper Street
It's only a 0-65 contest, but there aren't any easy options at this stage of the year, even at this seemingly lowly level, especially when you see horses in the Highclere and Rothchild colours making their respective handicap debuts from marks in the 50s.
In truth, an opening mark of 63 looks pretty harsh on what she's achieved. She's ready to start, however, and Jack Mitchell, who knows her well and gets on with her, is keen for her to tackle this mile and a quarter trip, so we'll keep our fingers crossed.