Friday at Sandown
16:40 – Davies Group Handicap – Kalma
13/2) has been successful twice so far this year, once over 10 furlongs at Nottingham and more recently over 12 furlongs at Wolverhampton. From the replays I’ve watched, she has travelled like a horse who will relish the step up to 14 furlongs. Alan King is such a brilliant dual-purpose trainer – he does so well with these types of horses by progressing them through handicaps over a variety of distances. We carry a lightweight but we are up against the boys. She’ll probably need to improve again from her latest win, but there is no reason why she can’t do that and I’m really looking forward to riding her.
Saturday at Haydock
14:05 – Handicap – Auriferous
12/1) is a really honest horse who always tries. He has looked like a horse who would appreciate the extra two furlongs he’s racing over here. He was touched off by a useful type at Salisbury on his last start, and that was the fourth time this year he has hit the frame without getting his head in front. This looks a typically competitive Saturday handicap but we sneak in at the bottom on a low weight and the extra distance could be the making of him.
14:40 – Tribal Craft – Lancashire Oaks (Group 2)
Tribal Craft (
7/1) will be my ride in the Group 2 Lancashire Oaks. It is fitting that I ride this filly for legendary owner Jeff Smith, given that I won on his filly Barshiba in this very race 11 years ago. The win that day was my first ever British Group winner and one that lives long in the memory! Barshiba was the loveliest mare who had so much talent – she was blind in one eye which is quite unusual for a horse, but it didn’t stop her from being very good! Tribal Craft herself is a very worthy runner here having powered home in a Group 3 at York in May. That was by far her career best and she could still be improving. We take on the younger fillies here, including Mystery Angel who finished an excellent 2nd in the rain at Epsom in the Oaks. Sir Mark Prescott’s Alpinista was impressive on her last start and is another who we have to give weight away to. We have a solid each-way chance.