Horse Racing: Newmarket Stakes Preview
Gosdens Aim to Preserve Unbeaten Record in Gordon Richards Stakes at Racing Post

Gosdens Aim to Preserve Unbeaten Record in Gordon Richards Stakes at Racing Post

Mostahdaf emerged as a genuine Group 1 horse after his success 12 months ago but Israr doesn’t appear to be at the same level. He comes here following four straight defeats and was well beaten in Doha on his last outing. However, he is the highest-rated on both BHA and Racing Post Ratings, and if he can return to the form he showed when winning the 1m4f Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket last year he will be tough to beat.

This race is over two furlongs shorter though. Connections have reached for first-time blinkers in a bid to sharpen him up for this speedier test, but the Gosdens’ strike-rate drops from 21 per cent to 16 per cent with runners wearing that headgear for the first time since their first runner in Britain as a team in April 2021. If there is a future Group 1 winner in the field then it’s likely to be one of the less-exposed runners.

The four-year-olds Desert Hero and Flying Honours should be considered among them, while Okeechobee is still very lightly raced for a five-year-old. Moore is 1-1 for the fledgling trainer. “Friday should be a dry day, although there is a slight shower risk.

The round course is good, good to soft in places on the round course and good on the five-furlong sprint course. Our horses have just been needing their first run but he’s done as much as we wanted to at home. He’s in good form and we’re hopeful he’ll run a big race.

*William Haggas, trainer of Desert Hero*

A stiff mile and a quarter will be perfect for his first start of the year. He’s got a bit of speed and I suspect he’ll be staying on well at the finish. *Charlie Appleby, trainer of Flying Honours*

He hasn’t run since May so there will be some improvement to come from whatever he does here.

A mile and a quarter is a good starting point, although we’ll be looking at stepping him up in trip afterwards. We’re hoping for a nice comeback run that we can build on. *Thady Gosden, joint-trainer of Israr*

He ran on ground that was a bit quick for him in Qatar last time and hopefully this surface will suit him better in what looks a hot race.

He’s back to a mile and two furlongs but the track should suit him and we’ve been pleased with him since he returned from the Middle East. *Barry Mahon, racing manager to Juddmonte, owners of Okeechobee*

He was a long time off the track with an injury but he made a good comeback at Kempton and ran a good race behind Dubai Honour. He’s come out of the race well and although a horse with his rating and profile is not the easiest to place, this looked the next logical step.

It’ll be interesting to see if he can improve on his first run.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *