St Leger Festival Tips: My Nap, Lay And Big Priced Fancy At Doncaster

St Leger Festival Tips: Check out our ante-post thoughts on the action at Doncaster.
St Leger Festival Tips: Check out our ante-post thoughts on the action at Doncaster.

All eyes head to Doncaster racecourse for a fabulous few days of top notch Flat action at the end of this week at the St Leger Festival, and our man Steve Chambers provides his early thoughts on the meeting as he selects his Nap, Lay and Big-Priced fancy for the racing on Town Moor...

Nap - Razzle Dazzle - Flying Scotsman Stakes

There's set to be a hugely competitive renewal of the Listed Flying Scotsman Stakes at Doncaster on Friday afternoon, which will be one of the warm-up events for the hotly-anticipated Doncaster Cup, and there could be a whole host of smart two-year-olds taking their chance in this 7f event.

The likes of Dubawi Legend and Noble Truth head the betting, at the time of writing, but both of those failed to land any significant blow in the Acomb Stakes at York last time out, and while they are sure to improve for that experience they could be two challengers to take on here.

One that catches the eye a little further down the list is the Richard Hannon-trained RAZZLE DAZZLE, who scorched the turf last time out when winning a novice stakes at Newmarket by five lengths, and with a Group 1 entry in the Dewhurst Stakes for later in the season, he could be an exciting juvenile.

The way he quickened away from his rivals that day at Flat HQ was mightily-impressive, and while he will need to improve significantly now stepped up in class the son of Muhaarar appeared to have the capabilities of a lot more this season and warrants to be the nap of the meeting around the 15/2 mark.

Flying Scotsman Stakes
Razzle Dazzle silk

Razzle Dazzle


Lay - Stradivarius - Doncaster Cup

John & Thady Gosden are set to unleash their star stayer STRADIVARIUS on Friday afternoon, as the legendary seven-year-old bids for a second win in the Doncaster Cup, but at 11/10 is the regressing marathon star worth taking on in the 2m 1f 197y event? I think so!

Yet again punters may be forced to adopt a bit of a waiting game as the Alan King-trained Trueshan is entered for the Group 2 contest, as he looks to down his adversary, but if the rain doesn't arrive then it's like the Barbury Castle inmate won't run. Should some wet stuff hit Town Moor in the lead-up to the race then Trueshan is sure to be a major rival to Stradivarius, who was very workmanlike when beating Spanish Mission in the Lonsdale Cup at York last month.

There may be limited strength in depth in the staying division at the present time, but Stradivarius does certainly appear to be failing to reach the sort of standards he reached a couple of seasons ago, and it was only his bravery and tenacity that got his head in front in the Lonsdale Cup.

The likes of Twilight Payment, Princess Zoe, Rodrigo Diaz and Baron Samedi are all entered for the Doncaster Cup, and that quartet have some smart form on their record books, but will need a career best to down Stradivarius. But, should the legendary stayer fail to fire on all cylinders then he could well find it hard to make it two Cup wins on the spin.

Big-Priced Fancy - Interpretation - St Leger

Charlie Appleby's Hurricane Lane will be a red-hot favourite for Saturday's St Leger, as the Godolphin raider bids to claim victory in the final Classic of the season. but with the Godolphin hotpot an odds-on favourite then there could be some each-way value elsewhere in the line-up.

Six of the 13 entries at the five-day stage belong to Aidan O'Brien, who is attempting to win his sixth St Leger and the one that catches the eye is INTERPRETATION, who is around a 20/1 chance at the moment, and could be an exciting challenger against the aforementioned Hurricane Lane.

Once raced as a juvenile (fourth at the Curragh) the son of Galileo found his feet impressively this season, and will head to Doncaster on the back of three wins and he will certainly be of interest here, as he bids for the four-timer. A maiden victory in late June was followed by a comfortable win at Leopardstown a month later, while he showed his potential St Leger credentials last month when winning the Listed Vinnie Roe takes at Leopardstown in fine fashion.

He won by just under two lengths that day, but he was always finding enough that day and Ryan Moore was quick to champion his uncomplicated nature and his excellent attitude, and he could be one that takes to the stamina test of a Leger. He will no doubt have to improve significantly now lining up in one of the toughest races on the calendar, but there's sure to be more to come and at a big price he is worth back each-way.

St Leger
Interpretation silk

Interpretation (EW)

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