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Saturday, 3 September 2011

Got to be Misty For Me

Saturday has three races at the highest level in the UK & Ireland & whilst the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock looks a competitive contest with many potential contenders, the two Irish racces can be dominated by Aidann O'Brien with odds on shot So You Think in the Champion Stakes & Misty For Me in the Matron Stakes.

Aidan O'Brien's filly Misty For Me took advantage of a great ride under Jockey Seamus Heffernan last time out to slam the top drawer Midday by 6 lengths in one of the performances of the year. Before that she had failed to get the 12 furlong trip at Epsom in the Oaks but had shown her class & toughness in winning the Irish 1000 Guineas from her stablemate Together. The step back to the mile shouldn't be a problem with a likely strong pace that should allow her to settle & run her best race, Together reopposes but Misty For Me is the superior filly & will show that today. Other challengers include the likeable Lolly For Dolly & Pat Smullen's Emulous, they are decent sorts but would need to progress considerably to be genuine Group 1 contenders, Misty For Me is available at 11/8 & that price should be taken.

The Irish Champion Stakes is priced up as though it should be a cakewalk for So You Think, Ballydoyle's Antipodean resident. One of the best horses that Australia has produced, So You Think finished 3rd in the Melbourne Cup last year before 2 very easy wins in Ireland then just failing to beat Godolphin's Rewilding in the Prince of Wales before making amends when winning thee Eclipse at Sandown. It won't be totally straightforward for So You Think if Snow Fairy turns up in the form that she showed last year, when winning 4 Group 1's in 4 different countries. She hasn't been able to show her best form this year otherwise if she had we'd have been confident to tip her up as a 'free' each way bet at 6/1 as she's superior to the rest of the opposition.

The Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock is one of the late summer's racing highlight's & this renewal should prove a good one with many interesting contenders. Multiple handicap winning Hoof It attempts to make the step up to the top level for the 2nd time after failing over 5 furlongs at York in the Nunthorpe but this 6 furlong trip should suit much better & he is well drawn in stall 13. Graham Gibbons takes over the reins & has form on Easterby's charge after running up a hattrick in May 2010, Gibbons rarely gets his chance at Group & Listed level but has one of the best strike rates when doing so & is an excellent sprint jockey, whilst backing a horse solely because of a jockey is never a good reason this is still a positive. Big challengers come in the form of the classy Bated Breath, also drawn high in 15, & Golden Jubilee winner Society Rock - both have solid claims but Society Rock is potentially drawn awfully in 1 & Bated Breath may find it hard to pass the giant Hoof It if it comes down to a battle. Dream Ahead is probably the biggest danger as the top rated horse & impressive July Cup winner, he disappointed in France last time but if the race pans out here with a decent pace & gaps appearing at the right time then could end up an impressive looking winner. Hoof It should keep it simple however & gallop all the way to the line, being on a thoroughly genuine sort should mean we all get a good run for our money & he will hopefully deliver the 1st part of a Group 1 double for us at a price of 5/1.

Haydock 3.35 - Hoof It at 5/1
Leopardstown 5.40 - Misty For Me at 11/8

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