We're set for a great week of racing at York with the Ebor Festival taking centre stage, and Betfair Ambassador Ryan Moore has four good rides on day one...
"It'll be good to get back on board her and she will give these a race, win, lose or draw. Her record tells you as much, and the recent rain is a positive."
- Ryan Moore on Magical
Wide open handicap sprint but stable going well
13:45 - Came From The Dark
I haven't ridden him before but he is clearly a decent sprint handicapper when getting cut in the ground, so any more rain is obviously going to be big plus. He ended last season on a high, winning easily at Haydock and then failing by a neck to follow up off a 10lb higher mark in a big-field handicap at Ascot. He has hopefully progressed again since we last saw him, but he will need to have as he has gone up another 3lb for that defeat. His stable continues to go pretty well, but this is a 22-runner 5f handicap and it is anyone's race.
Conditions look right but he needs to step up a bit
14:45 - Mogul
This is clearly a race in which most of the runners have a similar level of form, and you cannot rule out any of the eight. That is definitely true of the lowest-rated in here, Roberto Escobarr. Rated 90, he could have gone for a handicap here on Friday, but he goes for this Group 2 instead and I can see why as he impressed me when winning easily in a novice at the track last month.
But obviously I am hopeful - and I can't see any in here being that confident of success going into the race - that Mogul can get the job done as he confirmed he is going the right way when beating Highland Chief and Subjectivist in the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood last time. Let's hope he can continue to progress with his racing, as he will need to step up to win this, and conditions look right for him.
Super consistent mare can go well with recent rain a positive
15:15 - Magical
The betting, and common sense, tells you as much but Ghaiyyath is the one to beat in here. He was a top-class performer before he went to the Eclipse last time, but he raised the bar again in winning there. But Lord North isn't that far behind him on form after what he did in the Prince Of Wales's last time, the 2,000 Guineas winner and Derby fourth Kameko gets the 3yo allowance and has shaped as though this may be his optimum trip, and we know Magical is a super-consistent Group 1 mare who ran so well at this meeting last year when second to Enable in the Yorkshire Oaks.
She will need a career-best performance if Ghaiyyath runs to the level of his Sandown win, but she has showed no signs that age is catching up with her in two wins this season. It'll be good to get back on board her and she will give these a race, win, lose or draw. Her record tells you as much, and the recent rain is a positive.
Has his chance in a very competitive handicap
15:45 - True Destiny
He has run to a similar level of form in his three starts last season, but perhaps he wasn't quite at his best over the marathon trip at Goodwood last time where he was 2lb well-in. So he is 2lb higher than when beaten 4 lengths last time, so he isn't obviously well treated, but he had earlier shaped better when third at Newbury and he is a course and distance winner with form on fast and with a bit of ease. He has his chance in another big-field handicap.