Enable was the biggest story over the weekend’s racing as she made her comeback in the September Stakes at Newcastle. After almost a year off she won the 4 runner event beating the very useful Crystal Ocean with ease in the process. It was a stunning return to action for last year’s star filly and she is now as short at 13/8 to retain the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe next month.
We saw attritional conditions at Haydock with the very heavy ground which certainly favoured Mekong in the opener alongside heavy ground specialist Here Comes When, who bounced back with a win for the season. The Sprint Cup was a murky affair in such testing ground and we didn’t see the best of a number of runners (unsurprisingly). It was also a disappointing performance from last years winner Harry Angel who has been unfortunate this season and suffered his first defeat away from Ascot. The Tin Man was a slightly unexpected winner as he isn’t usually a heavy ground specialist and had been well beaten in the race twice before. He is now the ante-post favourite for the end of season Champion Sprint Stakes.
The much better ground was seen at Ascot where Ripp Orf landed another big handicap win. First Eleven also gained compensation after being unlucky once or twice this season, showing his potential and winning comfortably in the Lavazza Stakes for John Gosden.
There were 2 jumps meetings on Saturday at Stratford and Wexford and I was most impressed with Nicky Henderson’s, Monbeg Legend who showed terrific spirit and fight to hold off all challengers giving a lot of weight away as well. Very consistent form figures and he continues to defy his official rating.
Mouthwatering fixture of racing this week. Starting from Thursday onwards at Doncaster and going right through the weekend with the St Leger, Irish St Leger, Irish Champion Stakes, Flying Five Stakes and of course Alpha Centauri in the Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes. Some huge races to get involved with and keep an eye for my selections this weekend.