Jamie Spencer gives us his thoughts on day three of the Ebor Festival
In the opening race today I ride Gabrial The Hero (1.55). This horse had all of last season off through injury but he has come back this year and has won his two starts this season. Obviously this is a step up in class because his two victories were in 0-85 handicaps and this is much tougher. However, he’s always been a horse that I have liked. A mile and a half should be on the limits of his stamina but he should get the trip ok.
At 2.30 I partner up with Certach who I have ridden three times already. I finished second the first time and then I won on him in the big race in Dubai on the World Cup night. He’s a horse who likes to get settled and relaxed in the early stages of a race. If he does do that, he has a good finish for this trip of two miles. His run last time at Leopardstown was disappointing but hopefully he can get back to form. Cavalryman will be very hard to beat but Certach did get the better of him over in Dubai early in the season. We’ve also got Estimate to contend with but she bombed out badly at Goodwood last time where she was never going in the race. The Gold Cup clearly took plenty out of her and she needs to bounce back.
In the third race of the day I am riding Cable Bay. This is this horse’s first run in just short of a year. Charlie had a difficult spring with him but when you look at his form last season, he was second in the Dewhurst and now he dropping down into a Listed race. It’s probably a watching brief today with it being his first start of the campaign but I am hoping he can run a nice race.
The Nunthorpe at 3.40 has produced a really good field again and to be honest, I think it is Sole Power’s race to lose. He’s got the best form and he’s very quick over 5f. This season he’s just looked in a different league to any of his rivals. My horse, Hot Streak, is very consistent and tries hard. I don’t think the 6f suited him last time so he back to down to 5f and hopefully he will put up a big show and make the frame. He’s two from two at York which is a big thing and he is a progressive horse.
Erik The Red makes his debut in the 4.20 and Kevin tells me this is a horse he likes but will need the experience. This is usually a very good race so it is a tough start for him.
Finally, I am with Halaton in the final race on the card. He’s a horse I really like. David Simcock was very keen to get him from the sales. He won on his first start for us at Sandown so we were pleased with that. This looks a good race for him and if you asked me what I thought my best bet of the day would be today, this would be it.