Under-rated Pastorius the Eclipse call
Saturday’s Coral-Eclipse is hardly a vintage renewal , particularly with a poor three year old representation, but it still sets a tricky puzzle for punters and I will put up the German colt as the best bet at the current prices. I think it is fair to say that German racing appears on the up in recent years and whilst there isn’t the strength in depth of the UK ,France and Ireland their top horses aren’t far beyond the top horses in general.Gone are the days when the German Classics are easy pickings and Pastorius is a genuine group one performer.
Pastorius won the German Derby last year from the subsequent dual Group 1 winner Novellist and then followed up in top company.He then ran with credit behind Danedream and Frankel.He started off this campaign taken the Group 1 Prix Ganay and on balance has just about the best form on offer.The negatives include the obvious issues running away from home and a disappointing effort in the incredibly competitive Singapore International. However he was poorly drawn at Kranji and eased when his chance had gone.A poor last run is never ideal but the double figure odds for Saturday are laughable and if this was run in Germany he would be favourite, indeed he was sent off 2/1 fav for that group 1 last time out.
Al Kazeem is a credit to his connections and a very worthy favourite, he is a great example of the value in keeping high class horses in training, as now aged five he has taken his form to another level. I am not convinced the Prince Of Wales was a great renewal but his ability to settle quickly and quicken when asked will make him hard to beat.The Fugue finished behind him at Ascot and whilst she will improve for her first run and can get much closer this time, I feel Al Kazeem will again come out on top and John Gosden’s filly will have her day at Goodwood.
Mukhadram split Al Kazeem and The Fugue in the Prince Of Wales and you can argue Sandown will suit bold front running tactics more than Ascot. I just feel he is unlikely to get such an easy uncontested lead and his rivals will be much more ready this time.He is likely to give you a fair run for your money however, especially from stall one , but should he really be shorter in the market than Pastorius who has won three Group 1 races.
Mars has become a victim of his own hype and if you ignore those ridiculous early classic quotes after winning an average Dundalk maiden, you could argue he has an excellent and promising CV.Sixth in the Guineas,sixth in the Derby and third in the St James Palace stakes in just 4 lifetime runs and now tackling what might prove to be his optimum trip he cannot be ignored for this.However three tough races at the highest level in fairly quick time make me wonder if this is what the horse wants just now. I know his trainer is a genius but even he makes mistakes and a little mid-season rest was what I was expecting and the risk of a flat effort puts me off at the price.
Ballydoyle may have stronger claims with Declaration Of War, who now looks to be the finished article and is going forward at a rate of knots.The market confidence before his disappointing Lockinge run told you his shrewd connections believe he is top class and a commanding performance in the Queen Anne confirmed that.If you believe he will improve for the extra distance then he is a massive runner and just about the pick, but I personnally don’t think he will be as effective at 10 furlongs. All runners from this stable deserve maximum respect and his surprise participation tells you he is in great order but I feel he will get out- stayed on Saturday.
As ever betting comes down to the prices on offer and at the time of writing, Pastorius is 10/1 and bigger ,which is hard to justify as he has achieved plenty already and a repeat of a number of his best efforts will see him go very close.