Bank on Brittain's best
Simon Holt previews Friday's action at Newmarket and fancies Rizeena to land the Falmouth Stakes for Clive Brittain.
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Simon Holt previews Friday's action at Newmarket and fancies Rizeena to land the Falmouth Stakes for Clive Brittain. RIZEENA, who bounced back to her best at Royal Ascot last time, can take advantage of the three-year-old weight-for-age allowance against the older fillies Integral and Sky Lantern in Friday's Group One Qipco Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket.
A tough and genuine two-year-old last season, Clive Brittain's stable star was a little disappointing in the 1000 Guineas on her reappearance but, after being forced to miss the Irish version (burst a blood vessel in training), she was back on song in the Coronation Stakes (Kiyoshi tenth) winning in decisive fashion under Ryan Moore from the smart but ill-fated French filly Lesstalk In Paris. Second to Lucky Kristale (conceding weight) on this card last year, Rizeena looks much better value at the odds than Integral and Sky Lantern who finished first and fifth in the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes (Purr Along third, Peace Burg seventh, Certify 12th).
With Moore committed to riding Integral, Olivier Peslier now takes the mount. Integral, who was beaten by Sky Lantern in the Sun Chariot Stakes here on the Rowley Mile course last autumn, was always travelling like a winner at Ascot, pulling readily clear of her rivals in the final furlong in the manner of a filly who is still progressing.
However, Sky Lantern could well give her more of a race this time. Somewhat burly in the paddock that day on her first outing since disappointing in Hong Kong last December, last year's 1000 Guineas winner had to concede 5lb to the winner and wasn't at her sharpest. Richard Hughes gave her an easy time of it in the closing stages.
Sky Lantern was considered by many to have been a little unlucky when beaten by Elusive Kate in this race 12 months ago and connections are bound to have targeted this renewal. It looks an intriguing contest.
In the opening Price Bailey EBF Stallions Fillies Handicap, ETAAB looks well handicapped. Successful in her last two starts, the William Haggas-trained filly gave 10lb and a half length beating to Halation over a mile at Yarmouth last month since when the runner-up, who fetched 120,000 guineas at the July Sale earlier this week, has won off a mark of 80 at Newcastle (and is now rated 85).
Rated 86 here, Etaab could still have something in hand of the handicapper and had earlier won readily over this seven-furlong trip at Lingfield. Legendary French trainer Andre Fabre is always to be respected - his English runners have a 30 per cent success rate here over the past ten years - and HIGH CELEBRITY looks a fascinating runner in the Group Two Duchess of Cambridge Stakes.
This daughter of Invincible Spirit was incredibly impressive on her recent debut at Chantilly and she could be anything. The home defence is led by Parsley, runner-up in a listed race over the course and distance, and the Queen Mary sixth Arabian Queen but, if High Celebrity is as good as she looked three weeks ago, there can only be one winner.