Wednesday is the first of three brilliant days of racing as York begins a new season with their Dante Festival.
Expect to see Classic clues aplenty on the Knavesmire during the meeting. The opening day is spearheaded by the Tattersalls Musidora Stakes (3.10pm) and that’s part of a cracking seven-race York card (1.40pm-4.50pm).
Watch all the action via live streaming when logged into MansionBet and read below for our tipster’s thoughts on the first day of the Dante Festival.
1.40 – Sky Bet Race To The Ebor Jorvik Handicap (1m4f)
Ilaraab won five on the bounce last season for William Haggas, the last of them over 1m2½f on soft ground here in October off a mark of 95. This longer trip should not prevent him making further progress but he’s 7lb higher now in a very competitive contest and his only defeat last term was first time out, so he might be worth taking on.
My Frankel should be involved for Sir Michael Stoute, while Rythmic Intent and Throne Hall are capable too. RAYMOND TUSK ran well on his only start here (1m6f, good to firm) in 2019. His Doncaster comeback was promising and a Listed third since behind Sir Ron Priestly is easily forgiven. He’s only had those two runs for Alan King and is an each-way player back in a handicap.
Selection: Raymond Tusk @
2.10 – Churchill Tyres Handicap (6f)
Soldier’s Minute won this race in 2019 and certainly has claims again from this current perch in the ratings. Aberama Gold could be a player if transferring recent all-weather form to the grass, while Embour could get involved if leaving behind a poor recent run at Newmarket. He had previously touched off WOVEN at Redcar, the latter having his first start for new trainer Michael Dods that day. Ground conditions here will suit Woven and he’s got a big run in him from his current mark in a wide open contest.
Selection: Woven @
2.40 – Duke Of York Clipper Logistics Stakes (Group 2, 6f)
July Cup hero Oxted must attempt to bounce back having been turned over by in-form Summerghand at Newmarket in last month’s Abernant Stakes. The pair are contenders, while Nahaar, Starman and Molatham will also view themselves as such. The one that might stand out in time is ART POWER for Tim Easterby. He was expected to give the mighty Battaash a scare in the Nunthorpe (5f) here last summer but disappointed. He’s a winner at this trip in Group 3 company and wasn’t beaten far in the Champions Sprint at Ascot when last spotted. He can go well fresh, will handle underfoot conditions and has the look of a top sprinter in the season ahead.
Selection: Art Power @
3.10 – Tattersalls Musidora Stakes (Fillies’ Group 3, 1m2f)
Roger Varian’s Teona sluiced through the field at Newcastle on the all-weather in November and is already prominent in The Oaks market ahead of this comeback. The daughter of Sea The Stars has plenty going for her, as does Aidan O’Brien’s Snowfall given her experiences in Group 1 contests last season. Mystery Angel comes in here off an impressive Newmarket success but NOON STAR might be the answer for Sir Michael Stoute. She looked one to follow in her Wetherby comeback success upped to this distance and won’t mind the bit of ease in the ground. The Galileo filly is a big talent.
Selection: Noon Star @
3.40 – Sky Bet Handicap (7f)
Bowman made every yard for a winning return at Lingfield a fortnight ago. He’s 4lb higher back on turf but, coming from Mark Johnston’s team, could be exceptionally tough to peg back if getting his head in the lead. Rifleman jinked and sent Ryan Moore packing at Sandown on his comeback but could do much better, while the same is true of Northern Express – third at Beverley recently. HUDDLESTON MAC looked a good prospect winning his Sandown maiden over this trip in August. He perhaps had too much on his plate in the Greenham at Newbury on his comeback and the Hughie Morrison-trained colt can figure here under Oisin Murphy in his first venture into a handicap.
Selection: Huddleston Mac @
4.15 – British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes (5f)
This could be a high-quality novice sprint. Yarmouth winner Second Wind sets the standard but has a penalty to concede and there are promising newcomers laced with potential to worry about for William Haggas’ Kodiac colt. Each of Catch Cunningham, Jadhlaan and RED POWER needs respecting and the betting should be monitored closely. Tom Dascombe’s £120,000 Acclamation colt is bred to be useful and can hit the ground running.
Selection: Red Power @
4.50 – Conundrum HR Consulting Handicap (1m4f)
Trainer David Menuisier is enjoying a good start to the season and his Newbury winner FLYIN’ SOLO has potential for better things again from a 4lb higher mark here with in-form jockey Rossa Ryan in the plate again. The increased trip looks the way to go with him and he’s a major contender. The likes of Bollin Joan, Mark Of Gold and Lydford will all be hoping to thwart the follow-up attempt and are capable in that regard.
Selection: Flyin’ Solo @
*All odds correct at time of writing