It's got to be Gatsby
The unbeaten Toormore dominates the ante-post market for Saturday's Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster, but our expert, The Insider, feels there are enough reasons to oppose Richard Hannon's charge.
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A narrow winner of his first two career starts, Toormore improved again when readily defeating Sudirman by two and three-quarter lengths in the Curragh's National Stakes over seven furlongs but Saturday will pose a few different questions.
Firstly, he looks set to face a stronger calibre of opposition. Granted, National Stakes third Giovanni Boldini has since bolted up at odds-on in a Listed race at Dundalk but the aforementioned runner-up let the form down when fourth to Astaire in the Middle Park, while the fourth subsequently finished last of six in the Dewhurst and the fifth only scrambled home by a neck in a Naas maiden.
Stepping up to a mile for the first time in his career could arguably bring about further improvement in Toormore but the extra yardage combined with the prospect of easy conditions raises a few concerns about the well-actioned son of Arakan and he could be stretched given most of the other leading contenders are already winners at the trip.
Hannon has another undefeated colt to call upon in the considerable shape of Chief Barker, who is a fine stamp of a horse and tailormade for middle-distances next term.
Aidan O'Brien's challenge must be respected given his recent dominance in the contest and once-raced Curragh maiden winner Century is likely to emerge as his main hope from a four-strong entry.
O'Brien's two most recent winners, Camelot and Kingsbarns, both lined up on Town Moor with just a maiden triumph to their name but there doesn't seem to be the same sort of hype surrounding Century, despite his comfortable defeat of a well-backed John Oxx-trained newcomer less than a fortnight ago.
There's a lot to like about the supplemented Kingston Hill, who is reported by Roger Varian to have thrived since his Autumn Stakes win at Newmarket, while Godolphin's Pinzolo and the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Snow Sky are unlikely to look out of place having also been added at a cost of £17,500.
Mark Johnston's Somewhat is worthy of consideration having thrashed the well-regarded Be Ready in the Washington Singer at Newbury prior to just missing out to Berkshire in the Royal Lodge, but THE GREY GATSBY is double his price at around 16/1 and that appears too big.
Like Toormore, Kevin Ryan's representative is unproven at a mile but, being a son of Mastercraftsman, the trip certainly won't be a problem and he stuck on in encouraging fashion when second to Outstrip in the Champagne Stakes over seven furlongs at Doncaster last month.
The winner and third have done that piece of form no harm at all by finishing third and second respectively behind War Command in the Dewhurst and it's highly unlikely we've seen the best of The Grey Gatsby considering he still looked a little inexperienced when asked to go through with his effort last time.
Ryan hasn't even had a runner in the Racing Post Trophy since 100/1 shot Prince Golan finished last in 2006 but he certainly knows what type of juvenile it takes having saddled Palace Episode to win the previous year, himself suffering defeat in the Royal Lodge en route to Doncaster, and the wily handler knows where he stands in the two-year-old division this term after Astaire and Hot Streak gave him a one-two in the Middle Park.