Newbury Geoffrey Freer Stakes & Hungerford Stakes Preview.
2.25 Betfred Geoffrey Freer Stakes 1m 5f61y (Group 3)
Some decent racing down at Newbury this weekend to get stuck into including the Group 3 Geoffrey Freer Stakes and Group 2 Hungerford Stakes, and if your lucky enough to be heading down there you get to see Olly Murs perform live after racing, could you honestly ask for anymore?
I’ll crack on with with the Geoffrey Freer Stakes and it’s currently headed by Defoe for Roger Varian and Andrea Atzeni trading at the top of the market trading at a general 9/4. I’ve been a huge fan of this horse this season and he’s progressed very nicely and has looked a Group horse in the making. He knuckled down to win a Listed Contest last time out when beating Frankuus at Hamilton by over a length. Frankuus has since gone out to frank the form (pardon the pun) by winning the Rose Of Lancaster at Haydock last weekend a Group 3 contest itself which is impressive form.
Currently just below Defoe in the market is Frontiersman for Charlie Appleby. He’s arguably one of the most frustrating horses in training at the moment, as he has bundles of ability but also has bundles of ability to chuck races away that are seemingly comfortably in his grasp. He was superb when second behind Highland Reel in the Group 1 Coronation Cup at Epsom which is the best form in the race by a long way. However, on his last appearance his quirks got the better of him again when looking to be in control of a Group 2 contest at Newmarket before running off a genuine line and losing out to Hawkbill. If he irons the quirks out, he’ll be very hard to beat here as he arguably the best horse in the race.
An each way alternative to the market principles I quite like is Horseplay for the in form Andrew Balding trading at a general 16/1. She’s only had five starts and wasn’t disgraced when fourth behind Enable in the Oaks at Epsom, followed by another fourth placed effort when not beaten that far in a Group 2 in France. She has the weight allowance here and at a price she might just run a big race. To Eternity for John Gosden is also a danger if repeating the dominant run that saw him win a Listed Contest at Newmarket by 6 lengths.
Selections: Defoe 9/4 – Horseplay 16/1 E/W
3.35 Betfred Hungerford Stakes 7f (Group 2)
The Hungerford Stakes is the feature race on Saturday at Newbury which is a seven furlong contest and it’s currently headed by Librisa Breeze for Dean Ivory, he was arguable quite unlucky at Goodwood when meeting traffic and finishing ninth in the Lennox Stakes. If finding his top form from last season he’s certainly sure to be there or thereabouts but he’s currently trading at a general 11/4 and I think there’s more value to be found here.
The horse that won the Lennox Stakes by making a storming run down the outside at 50/1 is next in the betting in Breton Rock for David Simcock. He relishes a bit of cut in the ground and if the rain does come I can’t see his price staying at 13/2, he’s a tough sort and if bringing the same form he showed up in at Goodwood he may well be hard to peg back again.
One I do like here though is Daban for John Gosden and Josephine Gordon, she was third in the Guineas behind Winter and sixth at Royal Ascsot behind Le Brivido. She’s still very lightly raced and I think there’s more to come from this one. She’s also over her best trip here and trading at 7/1 currently. I think thats a fantastic price for her to make a bold bid to get into the frame here.
Selections: Daban 7/1 E/W