Ripon and Windsor previews: Mukhayyam handicapped to strike
David Metcalf | July 4, 2016
Mukhayyam weighted to get back to winning ways at Ripon
Mukhayyam was a big eye-catcher last time out and can take advantage of a drop in the weights to score an overdue success in the 1m 1f handicap on this evening’s card at Ripon (20.15).
The gelding was a dual winner as a juvenile when trained by Sir Michael Stoute but then lost his way and joined Tim Easterby.
Mukhayyam started life off with his new handler off a rating of 91, but is now able to race off just 82.
That is a career-low and the four-year-old has shaped as if coming to hand in his last three starts.
Series of promising efforts
After finishing sixth of 13 to Firmament at Newcastle, Mukhayyam ran an excellent race 1 3/4 length fourth of 10 to Pandora in a class 3 contest at York before shaping far better than the bare result suggests when seventh of 13 to Sindarban at Carlisle.
The son of Dark Angel took a keen hold in midfield and never got enough room to get going in the latter, and was not knocked about once it was clear that his chance of winning had gone.
Judging by those efforts, Mukhayyam looks to be coming to the boil and weighted to take all the beating.
Artist poised to open account
Local Artist ran a blinder when runner-up last time out and can go one better to open her account in the 6f maiden that gets proceedings underway (18.45).
The John Quinn trained filly shaped with plenty of promise when fourth on debut at Redcar before going down by just 1/2 a length to Showdance Kid in a 12-runner affair at Carlisle.
Local Artist showed plenty of early dash to race prominently before throwing down a persistent challenge inside the final furlong.
It was a performance which suggested the daughter of Requinto would have no problem winning a race of this nature, and the form sets a clear standard in this line-up.
18.45: Local Artist (NB)
19.45: Knights Table
20.15: Mukhayyam (NAP)
21.15: Yulong Xiongba
Foxtrot Knight can waltz to success at Windsor
Trainer Ruth Carr has her team in fine form and Foxtrot Knight looks decent value to provide her with another winner in the 5f handicap on this evening’s card at Windsor (19.25).
The gelding was a three-time winner last season, and the last of those victories came over course and distance.
Foxtrot Knight only had to be driven out to score by a cosy 1 1/4 lengths off a mark of 77, and went to run another solid race over course and distance when third off 82.
The four-year-old is now able to race off a reduced rating of 78, just 1lb higher than when last victorious, and comes into the contest on the back of a highly promising fourth at Hamilton.
Foxtrot Knight travelled ominously well throughout on the heels of the leaders and held every chance inside the final furlong before weakening late on to be beaten 2 1/2 lengths.
That was his second start of the season, and the son of Kyllachy should now be spot on to do himself justice at a track which clearly suits.
Athlon holds all the aces
Athlon scored in good style last time out and make light of a rise in the weights to follow-up in the 1m 2f handicap (21.05).
The David Lanigan trained gelding failed to trouble the judge in three runs as a juvenile, but hinted at ability and looked the type that would come into his own as a three-year-old once strengthened up.
Athlon duly put in a much improved effort when an eye-catching fourth on return to action in a 1m maiden at Lingfield, and then lost out by just a head in a driving finish at Bath.
The son of Arakan then took advantage of what looked a lenient opening mark of 66 to make a winning handicap debut over course and distance last month.
Athlon showed a good attitude to dig deep and beat Sporty Yankee by a head, with the pair pulling seven lengths clear of the field to give the form a solid look.
A 6lb rise for that success looks more than fair, and Athlon is clearly going the right way and should have even more to offer.
18.05: Etienne Gerard
18.35: Best Solution
19.05: Fool To Cry
19.35: Foxtrot Knight (NAP)
20.35: Laugh Aloud
21.05: Athlon (NB)