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Sandown and York previews: Irony to be the Master again

David Metcalf | June 10, 2016

Master Of Irony can teach Sandown rivals a lesson

Master Of Irony scored in terrific style last time out and can make light of a penalty to follow-up in the 1m 2f handicap on today’s card at Sandown (15.30).

The Ralph Beckett trained gelding showed plenty of promise last season, including when strolling to a 3 1/4 length success in a handicap over 1m at Doncaster.

Master Of Irony was then far from disgraced when sixth of 19 in a competitive class 2 affair at York, and after shaping well on his second start of this campaign at Ripon he got back to winning ways with an emphatic success over this afternoon’s trip at Windsor 11 days ago.

After being held-up in the last pair by a confident Oisin Murphy, the four-year-old made stealthy headway two from home to take up the running inside the final furlong and power clear to score easing down by 3 1/4 lengths.

It was a most taking performance which suggested Master Of Irony was a handicapper going places, and a 6lb penalty may not be enough to stop the son of Makfi going in again given his lightly-raced and progressive profile.

Master Of Irony has now won three of his seven starts, and this looks a nice opportunity for him to boost that impressive strike rate.

Ralph Beckett

Hat-trick beckons for Shabbah

Shabbah is on a serious upward curve and can defy a further rise in the weights to land 1m 2f handicap (16.05).

The Sir Michael Stoute trained colt has proved a different proposition since going handicapping this season, winning both his starts in facile fashion.

In the first of those at Bath, the three-year-old won easing down by 2 3/4 lengths from Gawdawpalin who has since gone on to land a valuable handicap at Epsom.

Shabbah then made light of a 6lb rise to make all and record a 1 1/2 length success at Nottingham, winning eased down with tons in hand.

The assessor has hit the son of Sea The Stars with another 9lb rise following that victory, but a revised rating of 79 could still seriously underestimate Shabbah’s ability and with Ryan Moore in the saddle he can complete the hat-trick.

Sandown selections

13.45: Apamurra
14.20: Wall Of Light
14.55: Celestial Spheres
15.30: Master Of Irony (NAP)
16.05: Shabbah (NB)
16.40: Firesnake

Box clever at York with Pandora

Pandora caught the eye on seasonal reappearance and can cash-in on a drop in class to land the 1m 2f handicap on today’s card at York (14.35).

The filly had some smart form to her name last season when trained by Charlie Hills, winning in good style on debut at Doncaster before finishing a cracking third in the Group 3 Musidora Stakes over course and distance.

Pandora was officially rated 100 after the latter, and after failing to sparkle in two subsequent starts joined Yorkshire handler David O’Meara for the start of this campaign.

Although only seventh of nine to Light And Shade in a class 2 contest at Ascot last month on her first start for her new handler, Pandora shaped far better than the bare result suggests.

After being held-up, the four-year-old was making headway when carried right two from home and then eased and allowed to come home in her own time.

That run should have blow away the cobwebs, and Pandora is now able to race in this less competitive class 3 contest off a 3lb lower rating of 95 and looks weighted to take all the beating on the pick of her form.

PANDORA with S Drowne wins Maiden Stakes at Doncaster 28-3-15.

Alejandro weighted to strike

O’Meara looks have to hold leading claims of landing a double on the card with Alejandro in the 7f handicap (15.45).

The gelding is on a long losing run having not scored since landing a brace of contests over course and distance in 2014, including this race.

In the last of those successes, Alejandro scored off a mark of 94 and he is now able to race off just 85.

That gives the seven-year-old major claims at the weights, and there has been plenty to like about his two starts this season when finishing runner-up at Ayr and a keeping on third at Musselburgh six days ago.

Those efforts suggest Alejandro is no back number, and the son of Dark Angel looks to have been primed for this contest by his shrewd handler.

York selections

14.00: Computable
14.35: Pandora (NAP)
15.10: Elements Legacy
15.45: Alejandro (NB)
16.20: Gran Canaria Queen
16.50: Resiliency
17.20: Tamayuz Magic

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