Massaat is massive each-way value in 2000 Guineas
David Metcalf | April 29, 2016
Massaat has a major shout in 2000 Guineas
Air Force Blue is a red-hot favourite for the 2000 Guineas, but Massaat doesn’t have much to find on him and looks real each-way value in the 208th running of the colts’ Classic at Newmarket on Saturday (15:45).
Massaat shaped with bags of promise when runner-up on debut for now retired trainer Barry Hills, and duly went one better next time up when easily landing a decent 14-runner maiden at Leicester by 3 3/4 lengths.
Connections then pitched Massaat into Group 1 company for his final start of the campaign, and the son of Teofilo ran a stormer to finish runner-up to Air Force Blue in the Dewhurst Stakes over 7f at this venue.
Type to come into his own as a three-year-old
After being held-up in fifth behind the leaders, Massaat made good headway down the centre two from home before keeping on nicely to be beaten 3 1/4 lengths without being unduly knocked about.
Although no match for the winner, it was a most taking performance full of promise, and Massaat remains a real sort full of scope who should come into his own as a three-year-old.
The step up to 1m will definitely be in his favour and, with Paul Hanagan in the saddle, Massaat looks capable of running a huge race for rookie handler Owen Burrows.
Air Force Blue sets the standard
Air Force Blue ended last season as the champion juvenile, and is bidding to give Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien his eighth winner in the race.
This colt won four of his five starts as a two-year-old and, prior to his scintillating success in the Dewhurst, had landed a brace of Group 1 contests at the Curragh.
There is little doubt that the son of War front is a very classy sort, and O’Brien has described him as a “monster”. However, Air Force Blue has always come across as a very speedy type and if there are any stamina doubts this stiff mile will find him out.
It’s also a bit of a worry that connections are fitting Air Force Blue with a tongue-tie for the first time, suggesting that he may have some breathing issues. So, although Air Force Blue sets a clear standard on form, there may be enough reasons to take him on.
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Coral’s top tip: Massaat is a highly promising sort and looks well worth an each-way wager in a cracking renewal of the 2000 Guineas.