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Saturday 22nd June

Sat 22 June 2019

Good afternoon from Newmarket. The final day of Royal Ascot is upon us, the longest day of the year has been and gone – we are really flying through the season now! After a very quiet week we get back to business ourselves with three interesting runners today.

Our first representative is San Sebastian in the mile 3yo novice at 3.20 at Newmarket. This horse has made lovely progress in his two runs so far, showing promise on both occasions, but at the same time hinting that better is to come. I think he might ultimately appreciate further than a mile, but I am happy to stick with this trip for now before contemplating going further in the future.

He is a big heavy-topped horse who would not want the ground too fast, so I hope it does not dry out too much, and the standard set by Wings of Time, Cadre du Noir and Majaalis – amongst others – suggests that this is a warm maiden. So, whilst we are not going with any great expectation simply due to the standard of opposition, I am hopeful we will see another step forward from this son of Iffraaj and that he will confirm himself a nice prospect going forward. Dan Muscutt takes the mount.

Our next two runners both come at Lingfield this evening, kicking off with Dagueneau in the mile and five furlong 0-75 handicap at 6.45. A progressive staying handicapper last year, he just took his time to find his feet as a four-year-old, and disappointed on his initial runs. However, he bounced right back to form when losing in a photo finish at Nottingham last time, and it is hoped he can build on that effort.

That good performance coincided with a return to 0-75 company, and whilst we are still in at the same level today, it is potentially problematic that we are racing off a three pound higher mark. We just wondered if he had entirely gone through with his effort last time, so we switch to a first-time visor today, which will hopefully allow him to step forward again. He will need to of course, as this is a competitive heat, and the form of his Nottingham second has been let down since. That said, he is more than capable at this level and hopefully should not be far away. Rab Havlin rides.

Our final runner today is Annexation in the six-furlong three-year-old novice at 8.45. A keen going sort who will appreciate further once he learns how to race more efficiently, he only made his racecourse debut at Salisbury last month. It was a most pleasing effort, as he ran on in eyecatching fashion to be beaten seven lengths. The runner-up that day, Real Smooth, is in opposition once again this evening and there are plenty of other dangerous rivals. However, we are hoping to see another encouraging show from this son of Wootton Bassett, who will hopefully show some signals that suggest he has a nice future. Rab Havlin will be in the saddle.

All the best,


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