Check out the latest Timeform horse to add to your My Stable tracker
Check out the latest Timeform horse to add to your My Stable tracker

Horses To Follow: Timeform Eyecatchers

Check out the latest Timeform Eyecatchers and add them to your free My Stable tracker.

Timeform eyecatcher: Sunday

Swan Bay

Second, 7f maiden, Curragh, Sunday 8 August

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Watch a full replay for this race - and it's FREE

This looks a fairly useful maiden that was won by an improver who made all of the running on the far-side rail. Cowboy Justice had shaped well on his debut and put that experience to good use, always travelling comfortably in front and appreciating the step up in trip. He very much had the run of the race, though, and the eventual runner-up, Swan Bay, is the horse to take away.

Swan Bay is from a smart family and made a most promising start to his career, breaking well from the stalls and soon settled in a good position in midfield. He travelled comfortably through the first half of the race, though he did show signs of greenness when the tempo lifted around two furlongs from home, having to be niggled along to hold his position but doing all of his best work once switched on to the rail inside the final furlong.

He made a strong challenge to the winner and would probably have won had the race been 10 yards longer. The penny really dropped for Swan Bay close home and he seems sure to improve for that initial experience. A similar event should be a formality for this well-bred colt and he strikes as the type who will be plying his trade at a higher level later in the season.

Timeform eyecatcher: Saturday

Girl On Film

Won, 7f maiden, Newmarket, Saturday 7 August

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Watch a full replay for this race - and it's FREE

Girl On Film has an attractive pedigree – she is a half-sister to Love And Thunder, who won over a mile for John Gosden last year – and she very much looked the part in the paddock, so it is no surprise that she was well supported in the lead up to her debut.

Admittedly, it didn’t look the deepest maiden for the track beforehand, but it was hard not to be impressed by the manner in which Girl On Film dispatched of her rivals. She broke well enough from the stalls but was quickly taken back to settle in the rear where she ran green in the first two furlongs, having to be niggled along at times.

She was ridden to get into contention inside the final two furlongs and, while she again looked green initially when coming under pressure, once Rossa Ryan switched her out from behind horses it was impressive how she began to quicken. It didn’t take Girl On Film long to find her stride and she hit the front in the final 100 yards, easily asserting from her rivals under hands-and-heels riding and was very strong through the line.

A big, raw filly, Girl On Film could improve markedly for that initial experience, and she strikes as the type who could develop into a useful performer at the very least. She will have no problem staying a mile and is a horse to keep on side for the rest of the season.

Timeform eyecatcher: Friday


Seventh, 6f handicap, Thirsk, Friday 6 August

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Ginato was only seventh having been sent off favourite in division two of the six-furlong handicap at Thirsk but he would have finished much closer had he not been persistently denied a run. Ginato travelled as well as anything but a gap failed to open a couple of furlongs out, while he was also short of room a furlong from home, which cost him all chance. He was switched right to get a clear run after meeting with that significant interference and he kept on nicely close home, crossing the line with running still to give.

Ginato put up a career-best performance when winning at Ripon in first-time blinkers last month and the way he moved through the race at Thirsk suggests that he's worth treating as if still in top form. He looks to be on a decent mark and will be one to keep in mind when he next appears in a low-grade six-furlong handicap.

Timeform eyecatcher: Thursday

Farhh To Shy

Second, 6f novice, Yarmouth, Thursday 5 August

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A pair of unexposed sorts came to the fore in this novice event. The winner Maajdah showed improved form after 12 weeks off to open her account at the third attempt, though she didn’t have anything to spare at the line after enjoying the run of the race, suggesting she was possibly a fortunate winner.

Connections of the runner-up Farhh To Shy can certainly count themselves a shade unlucky given that she forfeited a few lengths to the winner with an awkward start. She recovered quickly to race in a share of second and rallied well after being outpaced briefly entering the final two furlongs. She was closing on Maajdah with every stride but just ran out of time to get her nose in front, ultimately passing the post a short head behind the winner.

Farhh To Shy still emerged as the best horse as the weights – she was conceding 7 lb to the winner having won a similar event over course and distance two weeks earlier – and the fact the first two pulled seven lengths clear of the rest suggests this is form to view positively.

This was just the third start of Farhh To Shy’s career and she has progressed with every one of them so far. It would be folly to rule out more improvement, too, so she remains one to be interested in for the George Margarson yard, with a switch to handicaps likely to be on the cards sooner rather than later.

Timeform eyecatcher: Wednesday

Clara's Approach

Seventh, 6f handicap, Sligo, Wednesday 4 August

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This was just a run-of-the-mill handicap and the fact Clara’s Approach could manage only seventh is hardly a ringing endorsement of her credentials. However, that doesn’t tell the whole story and it’s worth giving the race another watch to appreciate just how much better than the bare result she shaped, certainly outrunning her odds.

Sent off the 80/1 outsider of the field, Clara’s Approach was waited with in the early stages before starting to take closer order two furlongs out. She was still making good headway when meeting trouble and having to be snatched up early in the straight. Her troubles didn’t end there, either, as she once again found herself short of room inside the final 100 yards, ensuring that at no stage did she get a clear run at the leaders. She did well under the circumstances to pass the post less than two lengths behind the winner, even appearing to finish with running left.

Clara’s Approach was making just her second start in a handicap and she certainly showed enough to suggest she is on a good mark. She has a useful sprint pedigree, too, and it’s highly unlikely that she has reached her ceiling just yet, identifying her as one to bear in mind for a similar event in the coming weeks.

Timeform eyecatcher: Tuesday


Third, 7f maiden, Catterick, Tuesday 3 August

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Watch a full replay for this race - and it's FREE

Sweeping was an above-average colt to be turning up in a maiden at Catterick and the Chesham fourth was duly untroubled to land very short odds without needing to match his best form after making all the running. Behind him in third, Animato fared best of the newcomers and won’t always meet one as good as Sweeping in similar contests.

He chased the eventual winner before making his effort two out but proved one paced and wasn’t knocked about in the closing stages as he came home six and a half lengths behind the winner.

Representing David O’Meara and Cheveley Park Stud, Animato is from the first crop of the Eclipse and Juddmonte International winner Ulysses and comes from a family that’s been a prolific source of winners for Cheveley Park.

He’s out of a half-sister to Penitent whose wins for William Haggas included the Lincoln and who then did better still as a very smart seven-furlong and mile performer for O’Meara. Animato should stay a mile himself in due course and he seems sure to build on what was an encouraging debut.

Timeform eyecatcher: Monday

Arctic Fox

Fourth, 1m6f handicap, Ripon, Monday 2 August

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There was a bunched finish to this staying handicap with less than two lengths covering the first five past the post. The fine margins involved make it difficult to take a high view of the form, but plenty shaped as if in good nick and look likely to be winning races sooner rather than later, with the fourth Arctic Fox perhaps chief amongst them.

Arctic Fox is on a losing run stretching back to June 2019, but she has come down a fair way in the weights as a result, lining up here from a BHA mark of 76 – 8 lb lower than when recording her last win. She’d looked to be coming to the boil in three previous starts on the Flat in 2021 and this represented her best performance for a while, passing the post just a length behind the winner and looking likely to make an even bigger impact for much of the way.

In fact, Arctic Fox arguably went like the best horse at the weights, seeming well suited by the drop back in trip after failing to stay two miles on her previous start. She raced well off the pace this time after missing the break and began to make smooth headway from three furlongs out. She then threatened approaching the final furlong and hit a low of 1.88 in-running before her effort flattened out close home, possibly paying the price for the big move she made into contention.

Arctic Fox should remain competitive on this form and we know that she is capable of better still judged on the pick of her efforts from earlier in her career. She is versatile in terms of going (acts on good to firm and good to soft) and trip (has won over a mile and a quarter and stays much further), so it’s surely only a matter of time before she finds a suitable opportunity to take advantage of her falling mark.

Timeform Eyecatchers of the Week

July 26-August 1 - Boundless Power looks capable of better still

July 19-25 - Cliffs of Capri one to note for the Golden Mile

July 12-18 - Riches And Rubies will improve for a longer trip

July 5-11 - Hurricane Ivor remains a sprinter to be positive about

June 28-July 4 - Maglev one to note moving forward for William Haggas

June 21-27 - Clive Cox's juvenile Codify has more to offer in future

June 14-20 - Naval Crown is a horse to take forward from Royal Ascot

June 7-13 - Night Hunter caught the eye at Leicester

May 31-June 6 - To Be Wild was among the latest horses to take the eye

May 24-30 - Eyecatchers from Timeform including Bernardo O'Reilly

May 17-23 - Check out the week's eyecatchers from Timeform including Bezzas Lad

May 10-16 - Including a two-year-old to note from the Sunday meeting at Ripon

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