Kevin Blake recommends a couple of bets in the big races at Newmarket on Saturday including Burning Victory to continue Willie Mullins' excellent record in the Cesarewitch...
"It wouldn’t be a surprise if Go Bears Go ends up being well positioned as the race goes on and capitalises on that to at least hit the frame."
With a couple of National Hunt races returning to the ITV screen on Friday and a noticeable chill in the air in the last week, there is no mistaking that the turn of the seasons is well under way. Just a few weeks remain where Flat racing will take centre stage, but there is still some great action to unfold, most imminently at Newmarket on Saturday where the Cesarewitch and Dewhurst take centre stage.
The Darley Dewhurst Stakes (14:55) will largely be seen as a formality for the Charlie Appleby-trained Native Trail after his dominant display in the National Stakes at the Curragh.
Mind you, while the end result may have been dominance, the manner in which he did it was frankly a bit odd. He didn't seem to travel early and was under pressure a long way from home until the afterburners kicked in late on. While he probably should win and it will be fascinating to see how he shapes, he doesn't appeal as a betting proposition.
Go Bears Go could relish longer trip
With there being eight runners, there are all sorts of options in terms of a win and place bet, place only betting and betting without the favourite for those that like one outside of the market leader. In an effort to try and find some value at bigger prices, the David Loughnane-trained Go Bears Go is put forward.
He has been acquitting himself very well all season long and ran another belter when fourth in the Middle Park Stakes at this track last time. The manner in which he was briefly caught flat footed before coming back at them at the line suggests that he is ready for this longer trip.
Most interestingly, there may not be a huge amount of pace in this race and he seems sure to either make the running himself or certainly sit very handy. It wouldn't be a surprise if he ends up being well positioned as the race goes on and capitalises on that to at least hit the frame.
Mullins' runner to challenge for Cesarewitch
The Together For Racing International Cesarewitch Handicap (15:35) is always one of the most fiercely competitive handicaps of the entire season, but it has proven to be a Willie Mullins (below) benefit in recent seasons with the Closutton maestro having saddled the winner of the last three renewals.
On two of those occasions, though, it wasn't anything like Mullins' first string that did the business for him, so not being swayed by apparent pecking orders amongst his six runners may be a prudent approach.
With that in mind, preference is given to Burning Victory. The five-year-old first came to wider prominence when winning the Triumph Hurdle that is most remembered for the dramatic exit of Goshen. Absent for over a year, she has been given a fascinating campaign this summer, winning handicaps on the Flat in France either side of running a big race in the Galway Hurdle considering she jumped poorly.
A 4lb penalty for her latest win on the Flat effectively puts her a mark of 98 here, which looks fair based on the best of her Flat form much earlier in her career. This track, trip and ground should all suit and a big run from her would not at all surprise.
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