Crowley calls it: “Muntahaa could have an each-way chance in the Ebor.”
Coral ambassador previews final day of the festival
Saturday – York
I begin a busy afternoon on Mustashry for the boss. He’s a smashing horse who won this race last year, and he’s won his only start so far this season, which he did nicely at Sandown.
This is a good little race, and Lord Glitters looks the biggest danger, but if mine’s in the same form as last year he should go close.
Track form here is always important, and he’s trained by the right man so I’d be hopeful of a big run.
Corgi has been consistent all year, including a second at Royal Ascot and a second at Glorious Goodwood.
Last time we just ran into one who was getting plenty of weight from us, while the horse one place behind us that day, Making Miracles, takes us on again, and looks a big danger again here, but if my fella runs his usual good race, he shouldn’t be far away.
My one concern would be his wide draw, which even over this 1m 6 furlong trip is important. The draw is important in every race, because if you can’t get your position, you’re always playing catch up.
Once you’ve got your spot, you can relax your horse, but if you’re too far back for example, you’ll be asking your horse too much too soon.
Here at York, although it’s a long sweeping bend turning in, you don’t want to be coming six or seven wide in a big field, as you’re giving a lot of ground away.
It won’t be easy to beat Expert Eye in the City Of York Stakes, following his second place in the Sussex Stakes.
But Tabarrak is a tough, likable sort who is generally very consistent, although he hasn’t shown the level of form of some of these. He would need to step up and that won’t be easy.
In the Ebor I ride Muntahaa, a talented horse but not the easiest. He was 4th in the St Leger a couple of years ago, and he does always work well at home, so while the talent is undoubtedly there, he’s just not the most straightforward ride.
They will go a good gallop here, and in a big field, if it all fell right for him he could run a big race, but that is a big if.
We’ve also been draw very wide, which as I explained earlier, is a negative, so I’ll have to ride him for a bit of luck, but he is a Group winner running in a handicap.
He’s a big strong horse who can carry the weight, and we’ve always thought of a lot of him, so he could have an each way chance.
I’ve picked up a nice spare on Well Done Fox in this Listed race. He won at this level at Sandown, before running OK in the Molecomb at Glorious Goodwood, and with Richard Hannon’s horses running well, I’d hope we had a decent chance here.
My final ride is on Alfarris for Sheikh Hamdan. I chose right to ride him over Afaak at Glorious Goodwood, so we know he’s in good form, but the big negative here is being drawn 20 of 20, it makes life difficult from there.
He’ll be held up as I wouldn’t want to hit the front too soon, but it’s not an ideal draw, I would like to have been drawn 1 – 10. He’ll have a chance but it will be hard work from out wide.