Sea Of Heaven among Ascot tips for Shergar Cup day
David Metcalf | August 5, 2016
Sea Of Heaven can sail to success for Sir Mark
Trainer Sir Mark Prescott has his team in terrific shape, and the progressive Sea Of Heaven can provide him with another winner in the 2m Shergar Cup Stayers at Ascot (13:45).
Like many from the stable, the gelding showed improved form when stepped up in trip last season and winning twice.
Sea Of Heaven is a strapping type who looked as if he could have even more to offer as a four-year-old, and that view has been confirmed in three outings this season.
After shaping as if needing the run when 12th of 20 in the Northumberland Plate at Newcastle, the son of Sea The Stars ran a blinder when runner-up to the thriving Sweet Selection at Newbury.
Value for more than the winning margin
Sea Of Heaven then got back on the scoresheet when landing a competitive 11-runner handicap over course and distance by 1/2 a length from Nakeeta.
After being held-up off the pace, Sea Of Heaven made stealthy headway on the outside two from home to take up the running approaching the final furlong.
He then idled when hitting the front but found plenty when challenged to assert close home and score with more in hand than the winning margin suggests.
A 4lb rise for that success looks more than fair, given the manner of the victory, and Sea Of Heaven has the assistance in the saddle of top Japanese rider Kenichi Ikezoe, who claimed the three-year-old Triple Crown in his home country in 2011 on board Orfevre.
Ascot tips: Lots to like about Duretto
Durreto has two wins and a second to his name over course and distance, so looks the answer to the 1m 4f Shergar Challenge (14.20).
The Andrew Balding trained four-year-old progressed into a useful performer last season and looked as good as ever on return to action when a fine 1/4 length runner-up to King Bolette at this venue.
Duretto backed that up with a solid fifth at Epsom and, although he failed to fire last time out in the Old Newton Cup at Haydock, it would be no surprise to see him bounce back under crack Canadian jockey Emma Jayne Wilson now returned to a track which clearly brings out in the best in him.
Muhadathat makes plenty of appeal
Wilson, who is the winning-most female jockey of all-time in Canada, looks to have a great chance of completing a double on the card aboard Muhadathat in the 6f Shergar Cup Sprint (16:05).
The Mark Johnston trained filly was a massive eye-catcher last time out over 5f at Goodwood when slowly away before flying home to be beaten just 1/2 a length into third behind Laughton in a competitive 19-runner affair.
Muhadathat looks sure to appreciate the extra furlong in this, given how she finished off the race, and another plus is that the daughter of Showcasing comes into the contest fresher than most after just two starts this season.
13.15: Medicean Man
13.45: Sea Of Heaven (NAP)
14.20: Duretto (NB)
14.55: Bancnuanaheireann (E/W)
15.30: White Shaheen