A Bun fight to savour
Ian Ogg looks back on a relatively quiet week for the Flat Notebook and ahead to what could be an exciting Bunbury Cup.
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Kafeel got the week off to a winning start at Ffos Las, albeit at the prohibitive odds of 1/2, with a three length success and his future will depend on how the handicapper reacts.
As his price indicates, it wasn't much of a race but he did win easily and his Epsom conqueror, Almargo, has gone in again which could give the assessor every excuse to hand out a meaty rise.
We'll find out what the damage is on Tuesday and that will determine whether he stays in the Notebook or not.
The question I've been asking myself since adding Street Boss to the Notebook is whether he should stay or go and I think it's finally time to bid adieu to Tim Easterby's grey.
It was another eyecatching run at Beverley - as you can see here - where his jockey was doing a fine job of kidding him into the race only to meet all sorts of trouble in running and being forced to switch absurdly wide.
He wouldn't have beaten the easy winner either way but remains more than capable of picking up a race this season although he clearly isn't straightforward and these low grade handicappers aren't easy to catch right.
I will, no doubt, still follow him over a cliff but he's dispatched from the Notebook.
I am keeping the faith with Lady Gibraltar, however, despite her fairly dismal effort at Sandown on Friday.
Her four career wins have come at Goodwood, Epsom and Lingfield so there was a big doubt as to whether the Esher track would bring out the best in her and I'm sure that she was as short as she was in the betting due to her decent draw.
The handicapper should drop her by a good 2 or 3lbs following this run which will bring her back to around her last winning mark and I'll be keeping a keen eye out for her among the entries at Glorious Goodwood.
Mistamel was in action on the same card and failed to build on the promise of his debut at Windsor but the market offered little encouragement and it did look a much deeper race than the contest at the Berkshire track.
There are mixed messages from that debut form with the second running well in defeat but the winner struggling in the Spindrifter Conditions Stakes and the seventh returning a beaten favourite at Epsom on Thursday.
It could be that nurseries are now the plan and this son of Rip Van Winkle is retained for the time being with that in mind.
Saturday evening saw Unex Michelangelo attempt to build on the promise of his run at Beverley but he shaped as though the slight drop in trip was not in his favour, running a similar race to the one he had on the Westwood, and remains one to be interested in.
In the week ahead we've got some cracking racing to look forward to with the July Festival from Newmarket and much more besides with Saturday one of the busiest days in the calendar.
It could be a decent week for Notebook followers if either Watchable or Ayaar can win the Bunbury Cup for which they are currently 8/1 and 14/1 chances with Sky Bet.
The Newmarket handicap does appear to be a likely target for the latter with Luca Cumani indicating on his website that Ayaar would take his chance there before heading to Glorious Goodwood.
It's obviously a hugely competitive handicap but both runners are relatively unexposed for their current handlers and appear to hold leading claims, even on their form as it stands following fine runs at Royal Ascot.
Prior to that, Misplaced Fortune has been declared for Pontefract on Tuesday and should go close from a decent draw granted a little luck in running.
There are plenty of possible runners elsewhere although it's a little early to assess the merits of each runner.
Baarez holds an entry for Ascot as he looks to prove that the form of his Haydock run was all wrong.
Dr Red Eye was a late withdrawal from Epsom last week but has mulitple options at that venue as well as Chester
Mighty Yar was another non-runner, in his case from the Old Newton Cup when the ground turned against him but he could return to the north for an outing to York where he may come up against Yenhaab although William Haggas' colt holds an alternative engagement at Chester.
Min Alemarat also has an option at Ascot in a handicap as well as a more optimistic looking engagement in the Group Three Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket.
Obsidian has an entry in a maiden at headquarters while Orion's Bow, from the same stable, may head to Nottingham although it's a slight concern that he's been absent since taking the eye in April and this run would qualify him for a handicap mark.
Handicapping should suit Orlando's Rogue and he will be qualified for nurseries if taking up his entry at the same meeting.