AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR HORSE RACING PREVIEW: York Ebor Festival 2023 | Day Two

Readers enjoyed a winning Day to begin the week at York thanks to a pair of 9/4 winners on an action-packed card!

The 2023 Ebor Festival, Day 2
York Racecourse
Wednesday 23rd August – Saturday 26th August
Live on ITV 1 HD from 1.30pm and Racing TV from 1.00pm

First Race: 1.50pm
Last Race: 5.20pm

Ballymount Boy ran creditably in the Acomb Stakes, perhaps finding the ground just too quick for all that he was a clear second. The first three home showed promise there – and Ballymount Boy will do nicely on a softer surface going forward.

We had much better luck with Continuous benefitting from Ryan Moore’s excellent judgement to run out a comprehensive winner of the Great Voltigeur from Castle Way and Gregory, who had to do a lot of running really after getting into a pace battle for the lead. Continuous looks to have a fine shot at the St Leger although Gregory should not be written off after getting in a pace battle and sticking on.

Mostahdaf’s brilliant victory in the Juddmonte International – giving Frankie Dettori a fitting send off from this race- made it a winning day in thrilling style, as Dettori went and set a hard pace – a brave tactic after he’d been forced to go too fast just half an hour earlier – and found a willing partner who responded to his every call, with Paddington (described as ‘flat’ by Ryan Moore after a hard season) unable to quite pull him back whilst Nashwa went down fighting in second with a fine performance. Top class racing all round, and a winner for us!

Ground: Quick on day 1 and can expect the same today.

Yorkshire Oaks (3.35pm)

This year’s Yorkshire Oaks has an open feel to it with the entire field having some sort of form claim at their best, and a tight vote goes to Nassau Stakes winner Al Husn. Roger Varian’s 4yo has progressed an incredible amount over the last two seasons, starting this year with a six length second to Via Sistina in the Dahlia Stakes before taking an Ayr listed contest, beating Nashwa in the Hoppings’ Stakes and then landing a strongly contested renewal of the Nassau at Glorious Goodwood.

There are two questions over her today, namely the trip and ground, (steps upto 1m4f for first time) and the ground (quickest she’ll have faced) but her pedigree (From a family which includes a 12 furlong winner, and dam’s last foal handled fast ground) suggests she can handle it and if she does, one could argue that she brings some of the strongest form to this race.

This test should suit Free Wind down to the ground (disappointed in Hardwicke at Royal Ascot; ground too testing at Glorious Goodwood) and she’s a big player if back to her best here although it’s possible that a hard effort at Goodwood could leave a mark (and whilst she’s won on this surface before, she edged to her right under pressure at Ascot).

There’s a strong three-year-old challenge with Irish Oaks 1-2 Savethelastdance and Bluestocking butting heads again. There was less than a length between the pair at The Curragh and they should be closely matched again, although Warm Heart was a comprehensive winner of the Ribblesdale on fast ground when given a positive ride (Bluestocking found trouble) and maybe a decent surface will see her bounce back to that form after disappointing in the Irish Oaks.

Novakai was second to Oaks winner Souls Sister in the Musidora and was a very impressive winner at Newmarket, whilst Rosscarberry, Stay Alert, Sea Silk Road and Poptronic are all worthy of respect in a most competitive renewal.

Rest Of Card

The action begins with what looks to be an extremely competitive renewal of the Lowther Stakes which can go to favourite Relief Rally. Beaten a nose at Royal Ascot in the Queen Mary (with Beautiful Diamond and Flora Of Bermuda behind), she took advantage of favourable weights to take the Super Sprint in impressive style, shaping as if six furlongs over this trip on the Knavesmire would be perfect for her.

She can confirm Royal Ascot form with Beautiful Diamond and Flora Of Bermuda, and she gets the vote over impressive Curragh winner Cherry Blossom and Godolphin’s Star of Mystery, who over raced in the Duchess of Cambridge Stakes at the July Meeting.

There’s just as much money on offer but a much larger field for the Harry Beeby Premier Yearling Stakes (2.25), where one of the race’s more exposed runners could have a big say. Dapperling hasn’t looked like anything special in her first five starts – she got off the ff the mark at the fifth attempt in a 5f Lingfield novice – but since then she’s finished second in the Super Sprint and fourth at Glorious Goodwood in a strong conditions event when finding herself in a poor position early.

That form is amongst the best in this race and if she repeats it, she shouldn’t be far away at the finish here.

There are few handicappers who are more consistent than Northern Express and Michael Dods’s charge must have a big chance in the Clipper Handicap (3.00). He was unlucky not to win the Hambleton Handicap at the Dante meeting and since then he’s finished third in the Buckingham Palace at Royal Ascot, won over seven furlongs here, and finished fourth in the International Stakes. That last effort came off 102, so a mark of 101 here is within his grasp and if things fall right, he can go close.

None of the contenders made particular appeal in the Galtres Stakes (4.10), Lincoln Legacy just topped the list in the Nursery (4.45) and a tremendously competitive closing handicap could go to Nigiri if she handles the fastest ground she’s faced so far.


BACK Relief Rally 2 pts win in 1.50 York at 2/1 (⭐ ? CLICK TO BET NOW)
BACK Dapperling 1 pt win in 2.25 York at 10/1 (⭐ ? CLICK TO BET NOW)
BACK Northern Express 1 pt win in 3.00 York at 7/1 (⭐ ? CLICK TO BET NOW)
BACK Al Husn 1 pt win in 3.35 York at 6/1 (⭐ ? CLICK TO BET NOW)

PROFIT/LOSS (AUGUST 2023): LOSS -5.40 points



previous arrow
next arrow