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Thursday 27th June

Thu 27 June 2019

Good afternoon from Newmarket. After a couple of quiet days we kick back into action with two runners today, and a busy weekend on the horizon.

Our first runner this afternoon is Toro Dorado, who runs in the mile 0-60 handicap at 4.40 at Newcastle. This horse showed ability on the AW last season, but has proven progressively disappointing in 2019, notably on turf on his last couple of starts. So we switch back to an artificial surface today, and hope that a stiff mile at Newcastle will prove his sort of trip. Should he consent to put his best foot forward then he ought to be very competitive, particularly from a lowly mark of 59, but it is very hard to predict how he will get on. One point of note is that we have managed to book Champion Jockey Silvestre de Sousa for the ride, and hopefully SDS can find the key to the horse.

We move on to Leicester at 5.55, where Gottardo runs in the seven-furlong 0-70 handicap for lady amateur riders. He will be partnered once again by our stable amateur Sophie Smith, as the pair seek a second victory together having registered a memorable last gasp success at Chelmsford in March.

Circumstances have conspired against Gottardo in two subsequent runs, but he has still run with credit on both occasions and hopefully he will get some more luck today at Leicester.

Gottardo is trying seven-furlongs for the first time having raced exclusively over sprint trips so far in his career, and it is hoped that under a patient ride this strong-finisher can prove his effectiveness over the new distance. A mark of 69 is perfectly fair, and whilst there might be one or two better handicapped horses in opposition, there is every reason to believe that Gottardo can run well. One cautionary note is that the ground is officially good to soft at the time of writing, and Gottardo’s better turf form is on a quicker surface. However, with warm weather forecast, hopefully the track can dry out between now and race time and give Gottardo every chance of putting his best foot forward.

Leicester is Sophie’s home track, so we have had the race in mind for Gottardo for quite a while. With family and friends on track to cheer her on, let’s hope that we get the perfect result. Best of luck Sophie!

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