With Mother Nature likely to have the final say about the Hollywoodbets Durbanville racemeeting on Saturday, we are looking for back-up entertainment as a precaution!
A field of thirty-four runners contest the bet365 Cambridgeshire (Heritage Handicap) at Newmarket on Saturday at 16h40.
Run over 9-furlongs, it carries a huge purse with winning connections pocketing £103,080. Track conditions are currently good to firm.
Unexposed three-year-olds have an advantage at this time of the season receiving 5lbs from the older horses and Greek Order looks the part this year.
The Harry & Roger Charlton’s trained son of Kingman looks a ‘Group horse in waiting’ judging by the way he won a handicap at Newbury last month. The Juddmonte colt cruised home over 10-furlongs by nearly five lengths without being asked a serious question by Oisin Murphy. That form has been franked by the runner-up Maximilian Caesar’s victory at the St Leger meeting and he comes into the Cambridgeshire carrying a low weight of 8 stone 9. Add to that the fact that Oisin Murphy keeps the ride, and he is favourable drawn in stall 25, he looks the one they all have to beat.
His stable-companion Merlin The Wizard, carrying 8 stone 10 and drawn on the rails at 34 could provide a one two for the very much in-form Charlton yard.
Earlier on the card at 16h00, the Aidan O’Brien trained River Tiber could gain revenge on his Prix Morny conqueror Vandeek in the Gr1 Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes, run over 6-furlongs. Currently, they trade as 2/1 joint favourites and are the highest rated runners in the nine-horse field.
River Tiber, a big colt by Wootton Bassett colt looked a potential world beater when hosing up by 10 lengths on debut, adding a Naas win next time before prevailing by a neck in a strong looking Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot.
He was then off the track until the middle of August, reportedly missing some work in the lead up to the Deauville contest.
He was only beaten two and a quarter lengths into third that day on less-than-ideal soft ground and now re-opposes Vandeek (only run on soft ground) on a quicker surface.