Sky Sports Racing Ambassador Hollie Doyle is gearing up for an action-packed weekend with seven tours at Ayr on Saturday, including the Gold Cup standout Popmaster, before a rare trip to Sweden on Sunday.
Popmaster may be at the top of the speed charts
POPMASTER, the horse named after the popular Radio 2 contest, has the credentials to top the charts in its own right at Saturday’s Virgin Bet Ayr Gold Cup (3.40).
Ed Walker’s three-year-old son has a right to be among the market leaders. He has progressed very well this season, taking his strike rate to four from 10 when he justified favoring an Ascot handicap earlier this month.
The 5-pound penalty he incurred that day puts him into the race relatively underweight and I’m happy with my middle tie for 11th. I also hope that applying flashers for the first time will give him that all-important advantage. . also, on the ground you should enjoy.
This will be my first time racing with Popmaster and I am grateful to Ed and owner Laurence Bellman for giving me a great opportunity in such a famous race.
Hoping Typhoon can break home with great odds
Richard Hannon’s TYPHOON TEN advances through the ranks in the Virgin Bet Ayr Silver Cup (2.30) on Saturday after earning back-to-back victories in August.
Like Popmaster, he takes a 5-pound penalty in the race and is equally well drawn at 15th, where I’ll definitely have options.
The five-year-old’s last victory came in seven fast-field stadiums at Lingfield, so a strong six-run in what is described as good to steady should build on his strengths.
Ease in grade for Nazanin
It’s a long way from Archie Watson’s Saxon Gate Stables in Lambourn to Ayr Racecourse, but it’s worth the journey with my boss Imad Alsagar’s friendly filly NAZANIN.
He needs to get back to the promise of his second career at Ascot when he reappears in Group Three Virgin Bet Firth Of Clyde Fillies’ Stakes (3.05).
I was a little disappointed with her performance in Group Two Lowther Stakes in York last month after she ran so well behind the elegant Zain Claudette in the Princess Margaret, but it was a red-hot run on the ground that was too fast for her. .
I haven’t sat on it since, but I can confirm that it looks like a photo at home and I hope it can get back on track now that it returns to Group Three company.
Ginger form augmentation before test listed
The form of THE FLYING GINGER’s last run couldn’t have worked better. The horse he beat in York, Sea La Rosa, gave him a huge boost by winning at Doncaster’s St Leger Festival last week.
He teamed up with three-year-old Roger Fell at the Virgin Bet Doonside Cup Stakes (1.55) in Ayr. It’s a great question, going back to the listed company against battle-hardened opposition, but she deserves her chance.
I will almost certainly do the race in the hopes of landing some kind of valuable black. To do so, we must get ahead of Wolferton Stakes winner Juan Elcano, local hero Euchen Glen and Golden Mile winner Maydanny.
Plow to reach new heights
I am riding Keith Dalgleish’s HEIGHTS OF ARAN gelding in the Microtech EBF Nursery Handicap Group (1.20) in Ayr. It’s his first time at a handicap thanks to a promising effort on a similar ride in Hamilton last time and a mile on a solid surface seems like the right combination for him to progress again.
My fiance Tom Marquand won a good handicap in WOBWOBWOB at the Dante Meeting in York in May and a return to that kind of form will give him a shot at Download The Gribbens Taxi App Now Handicap (4.50), even with an 8-pound mark more. high.
Adrian Keatley’s gelding is coming back from a break after finishing lame on his last outing at The Knavesmire in July and it will be good to put on the Ontoawinner family silks just days after scoring for them at Secret Handsheikh in Yarmouth.
DASH OF SPICE, another Ontoawinner rep, is my last ride of the day on the Jordan Electrics Ltd Handicap (5.20). Tom beat him at Pontefract two starts ago and he should enjoy this step in the journey as he stays all day.
Stockholm Cup the ideal target for Outbox
I’m flying to Sweden on Sunday for three trips for Archie Watson at Bro Park in Stockholm, including my old friend OUTBOX in Group Three of the Stockholm International Cup (4.10).
This seems like an ideal goal for Hambleton Racing’s six-year-old son at the end of a wonderful season, defined by his win in the Fred Archer Stakes listed at Newmarket in July.
I have ridden at Bro Park before. It’s a sharp track, but it takes a bit to get home. Outbox is poorly drawn at 10, but holds up strongly at the mile and four furlongs and proved at Wolverhampton in March that it is adaptable enough to tackle a turning track.
Among his opponents is Ed Dunlop’s globetrotter Red Verdon, who should always be respected, but was behind us at the John Porter Stakes in the spring.
Gurkha and Knight in a two-pronged attack
Archie won the Listed Bro Park Sprint Championship (4.45) two years ago with Corinthia Knight and launches a double attack on the run this weekend.
Corinthia couldn’t be in better shape after back-to-back victories at Pontefract and will give Luke Morris a great ride, but I partner with MIGHTY GURKHA, a Group Three All-Weather winner who has run some decent runs in losses on grass. . this summer.
Well drawn for a cutting edge racer at rank one, and right next to Jane Chapple-Hyam’s Aplomb, Mighty Gurkha is versatile on the terrain, so it should be able to handle any variation on the official description of ‘good’ .
Corinthia Knight, the 14-race winner, has a more challenging starting position at nine, but came off the pace to win it in 2019.
I’m also at Archie’s LAST HOORAH in the 3.25pm seven-furlong race. He is a lovely colt who won for me at Ffos Las in August and was beaten on firm ground when he tried to stay at Chepstow. It’s better than that as I hope it shows up on a more suitable surface.
Excited with the first trip in St Leger
The INTERPRETATION made me proud at Cazoo St Leger last weekend, finishing fourth. It was my first career trip and being in one of Aidan O’Brien’s quartets was amazing.
He’s a lovely prospect for next year, as he demonstrated when he so bravely fulfilled his task on that long straight at Town Moor. Hurricane Lane had a right to win, but the way he came forward to claim glory was so impressive.
I was also called up to race for Aidan in France last Sunday and did better at La Joconde, finishing third in Group One Prix Vermeille. Although it was a great price, it didn’t surprise me to finish right behind its illustrious stablemate Snowfall as it showed a lot of quality when I rode it at Yorkshire Oaks.
The field was against Adrian Nicholls’ filly, Mo Celita, in the Group Three sprint on the same Longchamp undercard. I won a race included in it at Deauville a few weeks ago and she gave me enough feeling to suggest that she can run a massive race at the Prix de l’Abbaye next month if the ground gets soft.
Hollie Doyle was talking to Simon Mapletoft of Sky Sports Racing