Haydock preview: Achilles Stakes (15.10)
Music Master has some top class form to his name, and can take advantage of a drop in class and land the Achilles Stakes at Haydock (15.10).
The Henry Candy trained five-year-old developed into a very sort last season when showing progressive form to climb the sprinting ranks.
After easily landing a conditions’ contest at Windsor on his seasonal reappearance, Music Master went on to run a stormer at Royal Ascot when finishing a 2 3/4 length fourth of 14 to the brilliant Slade Power in the Group 1 Diamond Jubliee Stakes.
The son of Piccolo then got back on the winning trail in a Group 3 contest at Newbury, before rounding off the campaign with an excellent third of 17 to G Force in a Group 1 contest over 6f at this venue.
Music Master was then off the track for 222 days before shaping really well on seasonal reappearance at Newmarket last month when a running on 1 3/4 length third of 11 to Astaire in the Group 3 Abernant Stakes.
That run suggested that Music Master was in for a good campaign, and he is sure to come on a bundle for the outing.
This Listed contest also represents the easiest opportunity Music Master has faced for some time, and on the form of his runs behind Slade Power and G Force he is going to be very hard to beat.
Pretend has looked potentially high class on the all-weather in recent months and is a big player if proving as effective on turf.
The Charlie Appleby trained four-year-old has shown a potent turn of foot to win his last three starts, shaping like a Group horse in the making.
However, his stable companion Tryster had a similar profile before flopping when switched back to the turf in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown earlier in the week and backing Pretend clearly comes with risks attached.
Of the rest, Out Do has a progressive profile and looks capable of running a big race despite being stepped up in grade.
The David O’Meara trained gelding landed the valuable Great St Wilfrid at Ripon last year, and has shown improved form this season to land competitive handicaps at Ponetfract and York.
The six-year-old is clearly thriving, has a good turn of foot, and looks well worth a crack at this level for a yard that are having a good season.