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A Grand day out for Cheval at York

20 Aug 2019

York is one of my favourite places to race at, and I’ve had a lot of luck there in the past. On first look I think I’ve got a strong book of rides for this week’s Welcome To Yorkshire Ebor Festival. The quality and competition there is obviously really strong and this year looks no exception, but I think I’ve got some lovely chances. It’s made even more mouth-watering with the presence of superstars Enable and Stradivarius taking there chances on the Knavesmire.

Just the two rides for me on Wednesday, as I’m flying off to Kempton straight after the Juddmonte International. I galloped Japanese runner Cheval Grand, my ride in feature,  on grass the other day and I think he’s in super order. It’s very important to his chances that he has fast ground. He got bogged down last time at Ascot in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes, I could feel it going to post that the ground was too slow for him. It’s going to be vital he gets his conditions so I just hope the rain stays away from York, because if he does I think he’ll run well.

Crystal Ocean deserves to be favourite, as he’s rated an impressive 127. He’s a very, very good older horse. He ran superbly last time, just going down fighting to Enable, but there’s no shame in losing to her! He’ll be tough to pass. I think Regal Reality is a good horse but he needs to bounce back from last time. The three-year-olds are also interesting with Japan, Circus Maximus and King Of Comedy They’re all horses I think we could be hearing a lot more about but they need to go and prove it now.

In the Sky Bet And Symphony Group Handicap I chose Final Venture over Orvar who I did win on on Saturday. However, I just feel Final Venture’s last run at Ascot was massive and he is the class horse in this race. So that made my mind up for me to ride him in this.

Horse To Follow: Shadn, Goodwood, Saturday 2.40

She runs at Goodwood on Saturday. She won her last start at Newbury very nicely, by No Nay Never and I hope she’s improved on that. Great chance if doing so.