Dungannon to star for Oisin Murphy at York
Oisin Murphy hit the headlines at Ayr when he landed the feature race before going to complete an astonishing four-timer. He is being managed by trainer Andrew Balding and the combination team up with hat-trick seeking Dungannon in the 2.30 at York on Friday.
At six years of age, it may seem unlikely that the gelding would still be improving but he is certainly in the form of his life. He ran a promising race at Sandown before winning at Ascot under Jimmy Fortune.
Balding took the unusual step of fitting blinkers for the first time at Haydock on his latest start and he travelled smoothly throughout before stretching clear in the closing stages. He is up 5lbs for that win but Murphy’s claim negates the penalty and he looks the one to beat.
Graphic made a bold bid to make all in the Cambridgeshire two weeks ago, leading the stands side group for much of the nine furlong trip. He just weakened in the closing stages under Frankie Dettori and had to settle for fourth place behind Educate.
He is up a further 3lbs for that effort tomorrow and Ryan Moore takes over in the absence of the injured Italian. Graphic had won well at Kempton on his previous start and could represent value in a big field.
Luca Cumani’s Rockalong could give him most to do after chasing home Richard Hannon’s Brownsea Brink at Newmarket last time. Murphy partners Lincoln winner Levitate who was one of his Ayr winners and he is also likely to make his presence felt.
Luca Cumani’s Elhaame will be a popular choice in the 4.15 after a fine second at Ascot behind Excellent Result. That was his first attempt at a mile and a half and he could still be ahead of the handicapper.
Murphy can end the card on a winning note with Evanescent who is on a hat-trick after wins at Ayr and Pontefract. The son of Elusive City appeared to have plenty in hand last time out and can defy an 8lbs rise.
Selections: 2.00 Makin The Rules, 2.30 Dungannon (nb), 3.05 Graphic (NAP), 3.40 My Inspiration, 4.15 Elhaame, 4.50 Bold Captain, 5.20 Evanescent