Racing commentator Simon Holt is siding with a back-to-form Limato as he previews Saturday's key action from Ascot.
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LIMATO, winner of the Group One Prix de la Foret over this weekend at Chantilly in 2016, bypasses that event this time in favour of the less challenging Group Three John Guest Racing Bengough Stakes at Ascot on Saturday.
Trainer Henry Candy could have headed back to France, but the six-year-old seems to be on a confidence recovery mission after Listed wins at Newmarket (July course) and York having run well below par in the first half of the season when the stable was out of form.
This looks a shrewd policy and, in both races - beating Projection and Gifted Master into third and fifth respectively on the first occasion and then justifying odds-on favouritism at York on unsuitable good-to-soft ground - Limato has not been too far off his best.
Moreover, he has a history of delivering strong performances in the autumn, not just in that 2016 edition of the Foret, but when winning the Redcar Two-Year-Old Trophy on this day (brilliantly) in 2014 and when thrashing Massaat in a Group Two at Newmarket last October.
Limato's course form at Ascot is also convincing and includes one victory, a second in the Commonwealth Cup and third (to The Tin Man) in last year's Diamond Jubilee Stakes from four visits.
Respect should be afforded to Dream Of Dreams who is running well and likely to win soon and the improving Laugh A Minute, second in a Group Three at Deauville in August, but the selection should prove too classy.
Earlier, SPRING LOADED is fancied to gain a first pattern-race victory in the Listed Duke Of Edinburgh's Award Rous Stakes in which he returns to the scene of his impressive course and distance win in July.
Things haven't quite worked out for Paul D'Arcy's genuine grey since then in both the Stewards' Cup and the Great St. Wilfrid Handicap despite still running well and, on official ratings, he comes out just ahead of Judicial, Mr Lupton and Muthmir, who all carry penalties.
This looks a good opportunity on a course where he has also run well in a couple of Wokinghams in the past.
Newmarket's Group One Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes has been billed as a head-to-head between the terrifically game Laurens, winner of three Group Ones this season, and the smart Andre Fabre-trained filly Wind Chimes, beaten just a head by Recoletos in the Prix du Moulin last month.
It is difficult to split them and, with Clemmie, an eyecatching third to Laurens in the Matron Stakes seemingly running into form like so many of Aidan O’Brien’s horses, this will be a race worth watching.
Posted at 1230 BST on 05/10/18