Doncaster tips for Saturday: Yucatan strongly fancied in the headline act
Frank Monkhouse | 22 October 2016
Yucatan stars in Doncaster tips for Saturday
A pulsating afternoon of top quality horse racing takes place at Doncaster on Saturday with the Group One Racing Post Trophy (15:50) the main attraction.
This spectacle on the flat, run over one mile and open to two-year-olds, caught the headlines earlier this week with the news that hot favourite Capri would not feature following Thursday’s declarations. That raised a few eyebrows, causing a flood of money on stablemate Yucatan, who can now be found as the most likely winner according to the betting.
Yucatan, the ace card of bang in form trainer Aidan O’Brien, was last seen finishing second behind the aforementioned Capri in the Group 2 Beresford Stakes a month ago and went plenty close that day, ending less than a length behind the victor without ever threatening to alter the final placings.
That effort came on the back of his sole win to date, when edging out Taj Mahal in a maiden over the one-mile trip at the Curragh, producing a late flurry to come from the middle of the pack to ensure the desired result was achieved, getting his head in front close home.
Joseph O’Brien sat in the pilot seat on both occasions and returns to do the steering again here in what will be Yucatan’s fourth career start. A product of Galileo, he’s a progressive sort who’s expected to offer plenty of improvement in the future and the breeding has to be a big plus for punters looking to find the edge in this one.
Pass-marks are also given considering he’s out of the O’Brien stable as the Irishman comes here in fantastic nick, hunting down a record of top-level winners in a year. He sends three into the race, including the jolly, but neither of the other two, Finn McCool or The Anvil, have found many friends in the early betting.
Rivet looking to spoil the party
Main challenger, if the odds are to be trusted, will be the William Haggas prepared Rivet who has already been seen scoring around here in the Group Two Champagne Stakes over 7f.
He went off favourite that day and won by the smallest of margins, but was an eye-catcher at the finish, staying on to grind out the win. He’s sure to make a contest of it again here.
Hat-trick seeking Andok must be respected
Later on the card and an intriguing puzzle needs solving in the 17.00 Saint Gobain Nursery where a dozen runners are expected to battle it out over the 7f trip.
The one that catches the eye most is previously unbeaten Andok who arrives with a 100 per cent record from two starts. Making his debut with a faultless effort around Redcar in the summer off a decent starting price, the two-year-old colt followed up with more of the same over course and distance last month.
Trainer Richard Fahey has told all who would listen of his admiration for this horse but believes he’ll need to improve again if he is to go close to bagging a hat-trick. The selection has been hiked up 5lbs for that effort last time out but there seems to be plenty yet to come from him and he’s one punters will do well to keep an eye on.
Doncaster tips for Saturday
1.35 – Makzeem
2.05 – Nuclear Power
2.40 – My Name Is Rio
3.15 – UAE Prince
3.50 – Yucatan
4.25 – Alpine Dream
5.00 – Andok
5.35 – Fanaan
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