Time to go Dutch at York

First published in Sport

DUTCH Connection can continue his ascension by taking the Tattersalls Acomb Stakes on the first day of the Ebor Festival at York.

With the two feature races on the card, the Juddmonte International and the Neptune Investment Management Great Voltigeur Stakes, not particularly appealing from a betting perspective, value could instead be found in this Group Three over seven furlongs.

Dutch Connection will be up against it in a heat which bristles with potential, but he should be good enough to win a race of this nature.

Charlie Hills’ youngster made a perfectly fine debut at Salisbury in June, after which he was unfortunate to bump into Faydhan over six furlongs at Haydock.

That rival is one of the leading contenders for next season’s 2000 Guineas, so Dutch Connection actually did well to finish second that day, beaten six lengths.

The form looks solid, too, as the third horse home, Speedy Move, has since won two on the spin.

Hills was clearly anticipating a big run at Glorious Goodwood a month later, and Dutch Connection did not disappoint.

The Dutch Art colt relished stepping up to seven furlongs with a most authoritative two-and-a-half-length defeat of Rotherwick.

Six of the last ten winners of that Goodwood maiden have since won at Listed level or higher so it is fair to assume Dutch Connection was not running against slowboats on the Downs.

Nor will that be the case at York, of course, but seven furlongs on a decent surface, allied to the appointment of William Buick, looks just the ticket at this stage of his career.

Conditions look ripe for Australia to achieve something special in the Juddmonte International, with Kingston Hill also holding especially stout claims in the Voltigeur.

The Symphony Group Stakes always ensures the Ebor meeting gets off to a fast-and-furious start, with Bogart a quiet fancy to win back-to-back renewals.

Kevin Ryan’s sprinter has been in tailspin since he struck by three-quarters of a length 12 months ago, which has seen his handicap mark fall 3lb lower than what it was at York last season.

Bogart also fleetingly showed the fires are still burning in the Skybet Dash, when he faded late on to finish tenth in what was a stronger race than this.

With that in mind, this return to five furlongs could be made to measure.

Spacious Sky looks one of the most interesting horses in the Fine Equinity Stakes.

The five-year-old gelding showed a good level of form over hurdles and on the Flat at the Galway Festival, but trainer Tony Martin has yet to get to the bottom of him on the level.

That Martin has gone out of his way to appoint Kieren Fallon must also be of some relevance.

  • Anthem Alexander will attempt to defy a penalty in the Pinsent Masons Lowther Stakes at York tomorrow rather than tackle her elders in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes later in the week. Eddie Lynam’s speedy filly won the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot and will carry 3lb more than all of her rivals due to that success.

However, she faces a far from straightforward task, as fellow Royal Ascot winner Cursory Glance will represent Roger Varian while the wide-margin Super Sprint winner Tiggy Wiggy is also in opposition.

Brian Meehan’s Sulaalaat was a four-length winner at Nottingham while Pastoral Girl was a fine second in a Group Three at Ascot for James Given. Richard Fahey runs Bimbo and Realtra, who was no match for Tiggy Wiggy at Newbury.

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