Simon Holt best bets for Saturday's racing

Last Updated May 26 2018, 14:45Racing
First Sitting
First Sitting

Simon Holt fancies First Sitting for a repeat victory at Goodwood - check out his four selections for Saturday's racing.

Recommended bets

1pt win Emblazoned in 3.25 Haydock at 16/1

1pt win Highlight Reel in 2.50 Haydock at 11/1

1pt win Precious Ramotswe in 3.05 York at 4/1

1pt win First Sitting in 1.55 Goodwood at 11/2

For details of advised bookmakers and each-way terms, visit our transparent tipping record


Minimum stakes could be in order across a whole host of tough punting challenges at Haydock, York and Goodwood on Saturday when a chance is taken on Frankie Dettori's mount EMBLAZONED handling a steep rise in class in the Group Two Armstrong Aggregates Sandy Lane Stakes at the first-named venue.

John Gosden's colt comes here off an effortless victory in a novice event at Yarmouth and, while the opposition that day was inferior to those he takes on now, there was an unmistakable element of class about his performance.

Earlier, Emblazoned only just scraped home from Georgian Manor (winner since) over seven furlongs at Lingfield but looked much more at home over this trip and on turf last time.

Of course, jumping from a novice to a Group Two is something of a shot in the dark but Gosden is a great judge and, whereas several of his rivals were smart juveniles who need to prove they are still as good now, the selection looks potentially a big improver.

On official ratings, Unfortunately and Sands Of Mali are joint top, the former ending an excellent first campaign with a slightly disappointing run in the Middle Park Stakes and the latter adding to his Gimcrack victory at Chantilly in heavy ground last month.

However, there is probably little between that pair along with the likes of Invincible Army, a winner at Ascot first time out (runner-up beaten since), 2000 Guineas seventh James Garfield, last August's Goodwood winner Barraquero (off since) and the speedy Heartache who tries six furlongs for the first time.

Earlier, Dettori must have good claims aboard the three-time winner Qaysar in the Amix Silver Bowl Handicap, and Richard Hannon's colt was particularly impressive at Newbury recently.

A St James's Palace Stakes entry, the son of Choisir now steps up to a mile for the first time but a slightly bigger concern might be the ground if it stays on the firm side of good as he has quite a high knee lift.

Moreover, he is not well weighted with the Lingfield winner Crack On Crack On even though who he has twice finished in front of that horse in the past.

At slightly better odds, the strong-travelling HIGHLIGHT REEL could be a threat if Hayley Turner can find a way through the big field.

Michael Bell's charge will probably have to take some early medicine from stall 16 but looks like he needs delivering late and should get the fast pace and cover he requires.

At Ascot two weeks ago, Highlight Reel caught the eye when moving smoothly into contention in a hot handicap won by Corrosive and might have finished closer than fifth but for being forced to switch at a crucial stage. Whether he would have found enough to win is debatable but he looks to have loads of ability and receives weight all round here.

At York, Gosden attempts another class jump with PRECIOUS RAMOTSWE who, after winning a handicap at Brighton three weeks ago, is now raised half a mile in trip and pitched in against Group Three opposition in the Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Bronte Cup Fillies Stakes.

However, the daughter of Nathaniel certainly made a good impression in Sussex, moving through powerfully in the closing stages over a mile-and-a-quarter to beat Thursday's Goodwood winner Canberra Cliffs.

Connections clearly see Precious Ramotswe as a stayer and, if that is the case, there could be a huge amount of improvement to come.

For one more selection, I will take FIRST SITTING to repeat last year's success in the Netbet Mobile Bet10Get10 Festival Stakes, in which he beat the re-opposing Spark Plug by just a nose.

After that race, the two horses went in slightly different directions in 2017 with First Sitting (later a winner at Deauville) ending the season 5lb higher in the ratings and Spark Plug 4lb lower.

Neither ran particularly well on their reappearance but that was the case with the selection last year; indeed, First Sitting has won second time out for the past three seasons.

Posted at 1716 BST on 25/05/18.

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