Friday, July 23, 2010



Trainer Jim Goldie is hoping for a lucrative pay day at York on Saturday when he runs the popular grey Nanton in the day’s feature contest, the eight-strong £100,000 Group Two Sky Bet York Stakes (3.05pm) over an extended 10 furlongs, as well as Hawkeyethenoo and Sea Of Leaves in the six-furlong £50,000 Sky Bet Dash (3.40pm).

Nanton (12/1 with Sky Bet) commenced the current campaign with a fine second to Group One winner Jukebox Jury in the Group Two Jockey Club Stakes over a mile and a half at Newmarket on May 1.

The eight-year-old made his name in top handicaps but has raced respectably in Listed and Pattern races this term. His latest outing came in the Group Two Princess Of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket on July 8, when sixth to Sans Frontier, again over a mile and a half, a run that has prompted Goldie to drop his charge in distance.

He revealed: “Nanton has been running up to his mark and we are dropping him back in trip to see if we can squeeze a bit more out of him. If we go the handicap route, he will have to lump top-weight in most races. He has been collecting money each time he has run and I am hoping we can collect some more. He is in great form, he likes the track and I think the mile and two might suit him.”

A high-class renewal of the Sky Bet York Stakes also includes the John Gosden-trained Debussy (4/1 joint-favourite) a Group Two winner last term who landed the Group Three Huxley Stakes at Chester in May before posting a fine effort to finish a little over four lengths behind Byword in the Group One Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Michael Bell is set to saddle the talented Monitor Closely (4/1 joint-favourite) for his seasonal debut. The Oasis Dream four-year-old was fifth in the Sky Bet York Stakes 12 months ago before landing the Group Two Great Voltigeur Stakes over 12 furlongs at York in August and then finishing third in the final British Classic, the St Leger at Doncaster.

The David Simcock-trained Bushman (5/1) is poised to attempt a hat-trick after clinching victories in the Group Three Diomed Stakes at Epsom in June and the Listed Royal Windsor Stakes at Windsor the previous month.

The Saeed bin Suroor-trained Balius (7/1) has won Group Two contests in Turkey and Dubai and the high-class seven-year-old is one of two Godolphin-owned runners in the Sky Bet York Stakes. The other is the Mahmood Al Zarooni-trained Allybar (5/1) successful in a Group Three at Meydan, Dubai, in February and subsequently a close third in the Group One Dubai World Cup, both run on Tapeta.

Luca Cumani saddles Group Three winner Summit Surge (9/1) while trainer Richard Fahey relies on the smart Dream Lodge (9/1).

Matt Doyle of Sky Bet said: “Michael Bell is using the Sky Bet as a launch pad for last year’s St Leger third Monitor Closely and it’s a fantastic betting heat with no one horse dominating the market.

“Six of the eight runners are already proven at Group level, having won a total of nine Pattern races between them and it’s a highly competitive renewal with us betting 4/1 the field.”

Sky Bet York Stakes, sponsors bet: 4/1 Debussy, Monitor Closely, 5/1 Allybar, 5/1 Bushman, 7/1 Balius, 9/1 Summit Surge, Dream Lodge, 12/1 Nanton

Each-way terms: 1/5 odds, first three places


Jim Goldie is all set to launch a twin-pronged attack on the lucrative £50,000 Sky Bet Dash (3.40pm) over six furlongs at York on Saturday, July 24, with Hawkeyethenoo (9st) and Sea Of Leaves (9st 1lb).

Hawkeyethenoo, well-supported at 8/1 with sponsor Sky Bet, landed a six-furlong handicap at Newmarket in May and was subsequently runner-up in the “Dash” at Epsom before clinching third in the Scurry Stakes at the Curragh, both in June.

The talented Hawk Wing gelding suffered a rare blip when down the field in the John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup at Hamilton on July 16, but Goldie is hopeful of a return to form for the four-year-old, who is drawn 18 of the 20 runners.

Goldie revealed today: “Hawkeyethenoo got upset in the stalls and tweaked his back a wee bit at Hamilton. The draw would have probably undone him anyway, but it wasn’t the draw that beat him.

“He was in grand form before that and it was his first hiccup, so to speak, and hopefully he can bounce back from that. You can’t go to the well at home and at the races, so we have given him a quiet week. He is eating well and hopefully he can come back on the day.”

Sea Of Leaves has some smart form in the book and the trainer, who is based just outside Glasgow, is expecting a bold show from the filly, who is currently available at 25/1 with Sky Bet after being allotted stall 16.

Goldie’s charge enjoyed no luck last time when unseating her rider at Musselburgh on June 5, but previously ran well to take fourth in the Listed Cecil Frail Stakes at Haydock in May.

He continued: “Sea Of Leaves just clipped heels at Musselburgh and lost the jockey. She then went for a gallop on her own and managed to bang her leg. She is fine and in good form now though. She is quite talented and I think she will run well. She could be a danger all right.

“Sea Of Leaves has bits of very good form - she is Listed fourth - she is tapping at the door and it would not be a big surprise if she was involved in the finish.”

Sky Bet makes the Barry Hills-trained Sunraider (9st) its 6/1 favourite following the three-year-old’s eye-catching victory in a six-furlong handicap at Haydock on June 9, his most recent start.

The Dandy Nicholls-trained course and distance winner Valery Borzov is also available at 8/1 having dropped to a mark of 94 from a high of 105, while the Mark Johnston-trained Lowdown, victorious in the John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup and now in search of a hat-trick, is another available at 8/1.

Others to note in a highly-competitive renewal include the Kevin Ryan-trained Parisian Pyramid (9st 5lb), course and distance winner Ingleby Lady (9st 6lb) from the David Barron stable and the Eric Alston-trained Novellen Lad (9st 2lb).

Sky Bet Dash, sponsors bet:

6/1 Sunraider, 8/1 Lowdown, 8/1 Hawkeyethenoo, 8/1 Valery Borzov, 12/1 Novellen Lad, 12/1 Ingleby Lady, 12/1 Parisian Pyramid, 14/1 Iver Bridge Lad, 14/1 Kaldoun Kingdom, 16/1 Tajneed, 16/1 Hitchens, 16/1 Tiddliwinks, 16/1 Damika, 20/1 Baldemar, 22/1 Damien, 25/1 Tombi, 25/1 Singeur, 25/1 Sea Of Leaves, 25/1 Sonny Red, 40/1 Star Rover

Each-way terms: 1/4 odds, first four places


The ground at York is currently good,

For more information, please contact: Matt Doyle, Sky Bet Racecourse PR Officer, on 07796 266160 or email




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