Catching Pigeons: Gossip and tips from the gallops ahead of weekend horse racing

All the latest rumours and whispers from the gallops...
All the latest rumours and whispers from the gallops...

Our Catching Pigeons insider has all the latest from the training centres around the country ahead of a big weekend.

Saturday's best bets

14.25 Haydock - Unibet Mile (Group Three)

7
4
39-1OR: 109D
2/1
Last RunWatch last race

Regal Reality should handle the soft ground and is fancied to double his Group Three tally with victory in the Unibet Mile at Haydock on Saturday. Sir Michael Stoute has burnt the torch slowly with this lightly-raced three-year-old and what proved ultimately to be an emphatic win over Britannia Stakes winner Ostilio at Glorious Goodwood five weeks ago promised much more for the future. His trainer has given him plenty of time to recover from that win, and connections have been delighted with his work in his build up.

13.50 Haydock - Read Luke Morris Blog At Unibet Handicap

6
4
38-7OR: 90
7/2
Last RunWatch last race

Natural History, a son of Nathaniel, is starting to improve nicely as he matures, and is fancied to see off Ben Vrackie in the Read Luke Morris Blog Handicap. Andrew Balding is very hopeful the three-year-old can develop into a smart stayer for The Queen, and there was a lot to like about his runaway win in a handicap at Chepstow last month. The handicapper has taken due note, and this valuable event represents a much tougher test, but this more demanding test of stamina should suit and he has pleased his in-form trainer since.

16.15 Haydock - 32Red Sprint Cup Stakes (Group One)

3
3
49-3OR: 125BFCD
6/4
Last RunWatch last race

Harry Angel has been reported to be back in great nick, and he should repeat his 2017 success in the Group One 32Red Sprint Cup, but those looking for a bit of each-way value could try their luck with Kevin Ryan's Hey Jonesy. His form suggests he is a rung below what is required to win this high class affair, but underfoot conditions look sure to be soft, and he should handle them better than most. Underfoot conditions have been against him for the whole of the Summer and the last time he ran on easy ground, in the Middle Park Stakes 11 months ago, he finished only three lengths adrift of the 2018 July Cup winner US Navy Flag.

14.45 Ascot - Cunard Handicap

14
19
68-9OR: 93D
33/1
Last RunWatch last race

Tupi could reward an each-way interest at a big price in the Cunard Handicap at Ascot. This marks the six-year-old's first appearance for Hughie Morrison after proving a grand servant for the Hannon team, and the change in scenery may well spark an upturn in form in what has proved a slightly disappointing season so far. The quiet spell has led to a fall in his rating and if he can reproduce anything like his staying on third to Brando in a Group One over six and a half furlongs at Deauville a year ago, he could give some of his much better fancied rivals a real scare. Chessman, who did not appear to enjoy Goodwood at all when well fancied for a valuable event last month, ran well here on his previous start and should also go well.

15.20 Ascot - Ritz Club EBF 'Breeders Series' Fillies' Handicap

10
8
38-11OR: 88D
7/1
Last RunWatch last race

Bella Ragazza, a stablemate of Tupi, merits serious consideration in the Ritz Club EBF Breeders Series Fillies Handicap. She has been heading in the right direction all season and followed a slightly unlucky second to subsequent Beverley winner Porth Swtan with an emphatic win at Goodwood. This is another grade up, but she will relish the stiff mile, and still looks nicely handicapped.

15.55 Ascot - Lavazza Stakes

1
9
39-7OR: 98D
5/2
Last RunWatch last race

Ghostwatch can concede weight all round in the Lavaza Handicap. There was a strong message pre-race for Charlie Appleby’s progressive three year old in the Melrose over a mile and three quarters at the York August meeting two weeks ago, and he duly delivered a hard fought win after taking command well over two furlongs out. Although he stayed on well to see off some quality opponents in the closing stages, it is no great surprise to see him step back to this mile and a half rather than stick to the longer trip for another competitive event at Haydock.

16.30 Ascot - Fever-Tree Handicap

11
11
39-1OR: 91D
9/2
Last RunWatch last race

Fille de Reve can double her tally for the season in the Fever-Tree Handicap over six furlongs. Ed Walker has enjoyed a fantastic season and few victories would have pleased him more than this highly regarded filly’s win in a Haydock Handicap last month. She was thought good enough to try her luck in a Guineas trial in the Spring,but this trip looks her right number and she should take advantage of the 4lb she receives from another progressive three-year-old, Rebel Streak.

14.40 Kempton - 188Bet Mobile Bet10 Get20 Nursery

6
2
29-1OR: 72
6/1
Last RunWatch last race

Lolita Pulido can notch her first success on her handicap debut in the 188Bet Mobile Nursery at Kempton. Eve Johnson Houghton's filly produced her best performance in three appearances so far when fifth to Goldino Bello at Newmarket six weeks ago and the form of that race looks very solid with both the winner, second and third performing with great credit since. She looks nicely weighted and should be ready to go after a short late Summer break.

17.35 Kempton - Best Odds Guaranteed At 188Bet Handicap

9
4
49-3OR: 78
7/1
Last RunWatch last race

Joe Tuite is a trainer who gets the maximum out of limited resources at his disposal, and he can get a winning performance from Redgrave in the Best Odds Handicap. The return to seven furlongs should suit this former Charlie Hills-trained inmate, who has produced a couple of promising efforts for his new connections, including an eye-catching sixth to over the mile here last time.

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Don't miss Simon Holt's selections for Sunday's racing at Cheltenham, with Le Prezien selected to land the Shloer Chase.

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