14:05 Newmarket - Sir John Hawkwood
He proved a bit of an in-and-out performer last season. However, while it is a strange thing to say of a horse that has won on both heavy and good to firm ground, I think that he either found the going too soft or fast on occasions last season. But he is clearly a horse with a lot of ability on his day and maybe a gelding operation has brought about more improvement, too. He certainly has been working nicely enough - he is a bit lighter and maybe has come to hand earlier as a result - and a mark of 98 is fair on what he has shown. The boss's horses are going really well at the moment - they have actually been in good form all season - so I am hopeful.
14:35 Newmarket - Dank
I keep reading that this filly has been working the house down, though I wouldn't read too much into those gallops reports you read. But, yes, she has been working pretty well leading up to this. The problem is so have probably the rest of these in here, and a few have shown better form than her, and we are the only one carrying a 3lb penalty for a Group 3 win. Compare that to the Group 1 level of form shown by the likes of Shirocco Star. I do like this filly though, the race has cut up a little bit, and it wouldn't surprise me if she won. But she did come in a bit late and she does have a tough task on with her penalty against horses with stronger form claims.
15:10 Newmarket - Ladyship
She beat the Abernant winner Tickled Pink in her maiden, and then she was unlucky to get beaten at Ascot next time. She ran no sort of race when she was fancied at York but finished off the season with a back-to-form second at Newmarket. All things considered, I have to think that she is plenty high enough in the weights off 96 on what she has shown on the racetrack. So although I can't be confident, this is a filly I like - she has been pleasing at home - 6f is her trip and I think she can be competitive here.
15:50 Newmarket - Snow Queen
I previewed this race in some depth last week - it is still on the site if you want to read it - and pretty much what I said then stands. I think Hot Snap will prove to be the best horse in here in the long term, but I just wonder whether this comes a little too soon for her in terms of experience and race know-how.
I was very taken by Moth at the Curragh - she really powered through the line - and I wouldn't rule out Sky Lantern reversing the Nell Gwyn form with Hot Snap on 3lb better terms with that run under belt. And the more I look at the race, the more I think Sky Lantern, a Group 1 winner and a real traveller, may well be the best each way bet in the race at around 12.011/1.
But I also give my mount Snow Queen an outside place chance at around 34.033/1. There are definite shades of Homecoming Queen, who I rode to win this race last year, about her in that she comes here with tons of experience but with plenty to find on the book. But I liked her comeback third over 7f at Leopardstown - I thought there was more to come from her, watching that race back a couple of times - and I think the step up in trip will suit. The fast ground is an unknown but she could improve for it, I suppose.
16:25 Newmarket - Nathr
I don't know much about this one, I'm afraid. But he is a pretty well-bred and expensive colt, and Charlie's horses continue in good form, including a 2yo newcomer in Culdaff who ran really well in defeat at Windsor on Monday. But it's a guessing game obviously with so many unknowns.
17:00 Newmarket - Concise
I think we will be delighted with some black type here. But on what she has shown so far, I don't think you can give her a strong winning chance. Especially as this could be a decent listed race, with the well-regarded Lady Nouf looking to bounce back from a disappointing run in the Nell Gwyn - this longer trip could suit her much better - and plenty of other promising and unexposed sorts in here as well. But Concise ran well at Kempton on her reappearance, and is stepping up in trip, so let's see how she gets on.
17:35 Newmarket - High Troja
I rode her when she won at Leicester by five lengths and I liked her. But, as well as the step up in trip there, she really relished a bit of cut in the ground. So that would concern me here, as would a 9lb rise in the weights. I suspect that she needs rain, and may not run if the ground rides fast on Sunday.