The Trader on the road to improvement
13:50 Newbury - The Trader
He probably has a bit to find with some of these, and a few in here look promising types too, but The Trader looks to be going the right way himself. He has looked good in wide-margin wins at Beverley and Chester, and this will show us where he stands as regards Group-race potential. Antonia De Vega did impress me at Newmarket and the filly of mine that she beat there looks a good prospect in her own right after winning at Cork next time.
No blinkers this time
14:25 Newbury - Dal Harraild
He probably ran as well as could be expected when fourth at Goodwood last time. Maybe, connections were expecting a little better, and the first-time blinkers that he wore there are ditched here.
At his best, then you can argue that he is just about the one to beat, but you have progressive 3yos in here like Raymond Tusk and Hamada is stepping up in class after running away with a Newmarket handicap from a mark in the 90s, so the up-and-comers could prove tough to overcome, I suppose.
He's gone Rogue
15:00 Newbury - Rogue
This looks your usual impossible handicap to solve but my horse hopefully has as good a chance as any. He is in great form, having won by 7 lengths at Newmarket last time, though you can say he is 6lb higher in a much deeper race, which makes life difficult. But he is an in-form, course winner who is a ground versatile, so there is a fair bit to like.
Leading chance in the Hungerford Stakes
15:35 Newbury - Gustav Klimt
I suppose you could argue that his season has not unfolded as seemed possible after his comeback win, but he is still one of best 3yo milers around and he has to have a leading chance here. He hasn't managed to get his head in front on his last five starts, but they have all been in Group 1 company, and he has actually been a model of consistency, his best runs coming at Ascot and Goodwood last time.
I don't think the drop to 7f will be an issue and he looks to have the penalised Sir Dancealot and Librisa Breeze as his main rivals. Librisa Breeze may well be the one to beat, especially if there is more rain.
Could be competitive
16:10 Newbury - Sextant
He is perhaps not the easiest but he shaped well enough for me on his debut at Nottingham to suggest he should be competitive in a race such as this. The step up to 1m4f will certainly help in his bid to go one better.
16:40 Newbury - Hidden Depths
He has run well in chasing home fair sorts on his last two starts, and a mark of 81 looks realistic enough for him. He is certainly bred to be decent, being out of our Musidora winner Liber Nauticus, so I think he should run well enough.