Novellist form easy to read
Man On The Spot previews Sunday's stakes races from the Curragh and Baden Baden.
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Free Code followed his Thirsk maiden success by taking a Haydock nursery and though this is a big step-up in grade he wouldn't be coming here unless thought capable of going well. Connor King has ridden Sign From Heaven in all of her four starts and keeps the ride despite not being able to use his claim. David Wachman also runs Remember You, who may have more scope though she was put in her place by GREAT WHITE EAGLE at Naas. The winner was always travelling nicely and entries in every major juvenile event over the next couple of months shows how highly he's regarded. Bluebell and Expedition also represent Ballydoyle but it will take something special to cause an upset.
ALONG CAME CASEY had few problems landing a Listed contest at Gowran a couple of weeks ago when Say finished third, Aloof fourth and Hanky Panky fifth. It's difficult to imagine any of the beaten horses reversing the form and Dermot Weld's mare should score again. Bunairgead ran well behind Venus De Milo at Naas in June and Cork earlier this month but this looks tougher and Pearl Of Africa is stepping out of handicap company with plenty to find on official ratings.
NOVELLIST is still improving and trounced the opposition in the King George at Ascot last month. Andreas Wohler's charge is hard to oppose in this if running anywhere near the same level. Stablemate Seismos won a soft Group 1 event at Munich three weeks ago but has five lengths to make up with the selection on earlier running while Meandre also has a bit to find even if returning to his best. The three-year-olds are even harder to fancy unless the lightly-raced Empoli turns out much better than he's shown so far.
This looks a case of Ballydoyle versus the UK. TAPESTRY heads the home contingent and she had her stablemate Perhaps behind in the Group 2 Debutante Stakes over the course and distance last time. She was still regarded as inexperienced but quickened well off a fast pace and can remain unbeaten. The runner-up had finished behind another Aidan O'Brien filly in Wonderfully at Leopardstown earlier but the winner was well beaten in the Albany Stakes at Ascot by today's rival Kiyoshi, who hasn't run subsequently. Charles Hills' filly could turnout to be top-class so it's a very interesting scenario, especially with another Royal Ascot winner Rizeena, successful in the Queen Mary, still in top form.