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Geared up for the Guineas

1 May 2015

Well, it’s Guineas weekend and you can really sense the excitement! It’s quite difficult at this stage of the season, as many of the fillies haven’t yet come in their coats and you’re not always 100% how much a horse has improved over the winter. It’s the time of year when you start to separate out the good horses from those that are going to be real Classic contenders.

Well, it’s Guineas weekend and you can really sense the excitement!

It’s quite difficult at this stage of the season, as many of the fillies haven’t yet come in their coats and you’re not always 100% how much a horse has improved over the winter. It’s the time of year when you start to separate out the good horses from those that are going to be real Classic contenders.

I talked up Flaming Spear in my last blog and he just never looked comfortable in the Greenham at Newbury and didn’t travel like he can. The French Guineas may now be the plan with the ground tending to ride a bit softer over there. Hughsie was also bullish after the race that Ivawood is much better than he showed.

In the QIPCO 2000 Guineas on Saturday I ride Cappella Sansevero (pictured above). He was a high-class two-year-old and Ger seems very happy with. It’s a big step up in trip, though, and we will have to see how he has trained on at three.

I’d fear Ivawood if he was back to his best and Gleneagles obviously has to be respected, while I really like Estidkhaar’s attitude.

Elm Park might not have been visually that impressive in his Newbury workout but he has since done a really good piece of work at Kingsclere. We now just have to hope for a bit of rain!

The QIPCO 1000 Guineas is a wide open race now that Found and Together Forever don’t run.  Barry Hills’s filly, Fadhayil did nothing wrong last year and is bred to be good at three years. Ryan Moore rides Legatissimo and you have to fear whatever he rides.

I wouldn’t have got a ride in the race, so I’m off to Germany to ride for the first time over there on Sunday. I partner Rogue Runner for Andreas Wohler at Frnkfurt and am really looking forward to riding in the Group 3 that Sea The Moon and Novellist have won recently. I head over on Sunday morning but will definitely be listening in to the commentary from Newmarket.

I also ride Wind Fire for David Brown in the Palace Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday. She handles fast ground well and has really progressed over the winter. She’s as strong as a bull now! Qatar Racing are also represented by Pearl Secret. He’s had his problems but is very good on his day. He had no luck in the Prix de L’Abbaye and was Group 1 placed last year, and these sprinters do get better with age.

The new jockeys’ championship starts on Saturday, too, and I’m sure that Richard Hughes will be very hungry to retain his crown. I think James Doyle will ride a lot of winners, though. He’s always been a real grafter and is happy to ride for any trainer – no matter how big or small – when he doesn’t have to ride for Godolphin. James has been very good to me and both him and Andrea are particularly good role models.

Hopefully, I can start riding a few more winners in the coming weeks of the Championship. It’s different this year as I’m going to the main meetings and riding the second strings, but I’m getting plenty rides and just need to keep my head down and work hard.

I’m also still riding out lots for different trainers and have actually been riding a lot of work recently on Limato for Henry Candy. He gave me a listed winner when I was still claiming, so I have a lot to thank him for. 

 

HORSE TO FOLLOW: UNRACED HENRY CANDY-TRAINED TWO-YEAR-OLD (by Helvyln out of Talampaya)