Ryan Moore on the York Ebor Festival: My thoughts on Friday's key races
Betfair Ambassador Ryan Moore gives us his opinion on the big races on the Friday of York's Ebor Festival...
"Take Cover is drawn in 12 and he hangs right, so I can see the race developing towards the stands rail as he goes on from the front and drifts across. So while low draws have been an advantage here this year, and the likes of Limato will get plenty of room from stall four, they could be detached from the pace."
- Ryan Moore on the Nunthorpe Stakes
14:30 York - Lonsdale Cup
Trip To Paris is the horse that I would probably choose to ride in here, but whether I would want to back him is another matter.
He clearly ran a very encouraging race over 1m2f on his comeback, he has had a good break since, this trip is obviously more suitable and I know that they are very happy with him.
But there is always a nagging doubt about a horse second time back after an injury, and this is a competitive race.
I rode Clever Cookie when he was second over 2m at Ascot in April and I just thought that trip was his limit that day, so whether he truly lasts home over this extended 2m would worry me slightly for him, as well as the fast ground. I also think Wicklow Brave could be better at less than 2m.
Pallasator has been running really well and, although he has finished fourth in an Ebor here, it may be wise to keep an eye on him to see if he behaves himself on the way to the paddock.
Curbyourenthusiasm would interest me most of the others. The ground started to go against him when he ran below form at Goodwood and if he returns to the form of his narrow second to Clever Cookie here over 1m6f in the Yorkshire Cup in May then I think he has a definite chance. There could be more improvement in him too, over this trip.
15:05 York - City of York Stakes
The betting seems to suggest this is between Nemoralia, Forge and Librisa Breeze, and I would be inclined to agree, though I will put in a good word for Birchwood.
I would forgive him his last run at Goodwood. He was drawn wide there, stumbled coming out of the stalls, didn't relax and by the time I got him cover and settled, the race was over. He is better than that.
Nemoralia is the deserved favourite. She won well here earlier in the season, her Coronation Stakes second makes her the one to beat and I don't think the dead ground would have been ideal for her in France last time. Back on quicker ground, she is the one to beat.
You have to respect Librisa Breeze stepping up in class, though whether 7f at York will be ideal I am not sure.
I think Forge will enjoy this flatter track after his excellent second over 1m at Goodwood. He is getting better with every run and I think the step back to 7f will suit him.
15:40 York - Nunthorpe Stakes
The first thing to say about this race is that there won't be a lot of room for jockeys with 20 runners, and they will need a lot of luck in running, not least where the pace gravitates to and where the race ends up being played out.
Take Cover is drawn in 12 and he hangs right, so I can see the race developing towards the stands rail as he goes on from the front and drifts across. So while low draws have been an advantage here this year, and the likes of Limato will get plenty of room from stall four, they could be detached from the pace.
It is hard to get away from Limato from a form perspective as he was very impressive in the July Cup. But he is a short price and he does come with a few "ifs".
Like I said, his draw in four may not prove to be ideal, this is his first start over 5f, and he does have a tendency to start slowly. He certainly wasn't too eager to come out of the stalls for me in the Foret last year.
Of course, that problem may have been rectified, and he bounced out fine at Newmarket, but it is a concern if you are backing him at a short price.
Mecca's Angel is obviously a big player if she comes back to her form in winning this race last season but she probably needs rain and she hasn't looked in the same form this year.
Profitable is interesting back to 5f, but I can't have the 2yos Yalta or Prince Of Lir, even getting all the weight.
To break track records you need everything to go your way. Everything has to go without a hitch or hassle, the horse has to use and distribute its energy perfectly, and that won't be happening with Yalta again here, even if he has got a draw close to the stands rail, with 19 runners in opposition.
I think the King George Stakes at Goodwood could be the key to this race. The first two home, Take Cover and Washington DC, obviously have to respected but I like Goldream and Easton Angel, third and fourth there.
In fact, I think Easton Angel is a very big price at 14-1 - that price surprised me - and Goldream is only marginally less attractive at 12-1.
I rode Washington DC in that Goodwood race and I thought I had the winner covered at one stage, but at the same time I thought Goldream was coming to beat us all, only to blow up on his first run back after a break. Goldream is a Group 1 winner who loves fast ground, and i think he has a big chance in this.
But, go back and look at the race, and you have to think that Easton Angel was very unlucky. Everything went wrong for her from start to finish. If she reproduces that level of form, with some luck thrown in, then I can easily see her winning this under Frankie on a track which we know she goes well at. And her draw in 17 could prove useful, too.