Will Lattimore spins you through the Saturday action from York……..
1.50pm (1m2f Fillies Handicap), this looks a battle between the three 3-y-o`s in the field, they seem to have a lot going for them. The one that I feel may come out on top is the Ralph Beckett-trained CARNVALE. This daughter of New Approach appreciated a change of surface, she had two modest efforts on the all-weather but looked a different horse on the turf and I got the impression there should be more to come throughout the season.
She won well winning a weak enough maiden by an easy five lengths at Newbury on her first start on the grass last month. She followed that up with a respectable third in a competitive handicap at Leicester three weeks ago. But to be fair she would have appreciated a stronger gallop and her effort is worth marking-up. I`m expecting the pace should be solid in this event with the Mark Johnston Maracuja the likely pacesetter which should be in her favour. She gets my vote to go very close.
2.20pm (7f 0-105 Handicap), an ultra competitive event to sort out, but I feel the best way to approach this race is stick to course and distance form, and that means DUTCH ROSE has to be the choice. She loves this venue 5 starts 4 wins to her name, all her wins were over today`s trip and the only time she was beaten was over a mile.
She caught my eye travelling like a winner last time out over a mile at Ponterfract, but just didn`t she out the trip as strong as the winner on the soft ground. The step back down in distance on this better ground will be more to her liking and should be involved if all is well.
2.55pm (1m2f Group 2 Sky Bet York Stakes), a nice pot of 56k to the winner and that could well be the in-form WINDHOEK who won with the minimum of fuss at Sandown last time out. Looking through all his form it`s easy to pick out that 10f on good to firm ground are his ideal conditions which he gets today.
This is a slightly stronger contest than he won last time out but I feel he is capable to do himself justice on his favourite surface. Keiron Fallon gets on really well with him and could be the one they all have to beat.
3.30pm (6f 0-105 Handicap Dash), this is definitely the most competitive race on the card and it`s a contest you could have 10 goes and still not get the winner. However, something has to win it and I`m going to chance the Robert Cowell-trained GOLDREAM.
I`m a big fan of his trainer who does really well with his sprinters, and this in-form 5-y-o actually caught my eye twice over 5f at this venue last season where he was unlucky not win both times. He was too far off the pace but did finish with a rattle and may find this extra furlong more to his liking. Interesting to see Sean Levey booked for the ride a jockey who I have plenty of time for and is worth an e/way punt at 12/1.
4.05pm (6f Maiden), Yorkshire-trainer Kevin Ryan saddled the previous two winners of this contest and he introduces a well-bred two-year-old by Showcasing (a sire who has been doing well this season) in the shape of MERCURY.
I`m sure he will be well-supported in the market and it wouldn`t surprise me at all if he is above this lot considering he has an entry in the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes back here in August.
4.40pm ( 2m Class 3 Handicap), a tight seven-runner affair and it`s hard discount any of the runners but my vote goes for ARGENT KNIGHT now that his trainer William Jarvis has his horses running well of late and the step down in trip will certainly be in his favour.
A fifth-placed finish behind Pique Sous over 2m5f at Royal Ascot was a decent effort considering it was off level weights against much stronger company. I`m expecting the gallop should be strong with two usually front runners in the field which should suit and looks the value of the contest at around 7/1 or even better.
5.15pm ( 5f 2-y-o Nursery Handicap), a really difficult contest to end the card, I havn`t got any strong views to be honest, but if you were to have a bet in the race maybe the William Haggas-trained PILLAR BOX could be worth a small investment.
The quicker ground was the key for his easy victory at Bath on only his second start after finishing well beaten on good to soft on his debut at Beverly. He didn`t run too badly in the Super Sprint at Newbury where he finished a respectable seventh of 24 behind the very impressive Tiggy Wiggy last weekend. I don`t know much about his rider Georgina Cox but I did see her win on Fathom Five last month at Ripon and she looks well able to ride and her 7lb claim will certainly help.