12th July 2023
As the Boodles July Festival kicks off, we are represented by the ever consistent Washington Heights as he bids to go one better than his recent excellent efforts. Also during this busy Thursday, we have Belsito in action at Doncaster and May Blossom at Carlisle, respectively.
It’s a busy hour of action as the Kevin Ryan trained Belsito starts off proceedings in the Talasey Handicap (2.35).
He is one of 17 runners, drawn in stall three, with regular ally Tom Eaves booked to ride.
It looks to be a competitive heat, with fellow three-year-old Storm Fox posting a number of solid efforts this season, including a career-best effort when narrowly beaten at Leicester last time out. She looks to have a progressive profile and could be a strong contender, if continuing in the same vein here.
Of the other three-year-olds, South Dakota Sioux represents fellow Hambleton trainer David O’Meara and he posted an eye-catching effort at Pontefract last time when hampered and doing his best work late on. This rival has won over this intermediate distance previously and he remains one of interest if handling the likely slower conditions here.
Belsito is in good shape in North Yorkshire and if appreciating the slightly extended distance and easier underfoot conditions, then Kevin is hopeful he can go well in this highly competitive handicap.
Swiftly switching to Newmarket, Washington Heights takes his chances in the bet365 Handicap (3.00) which is being shown live as part of ITV’s excellent coverage of the Boodles July Festival.
He is one of 17 runners, drawn in stall 12, with the maestro Ryan Moore booked to ride.
On viewing the race, regular rival Quinault is bidding for his sixth win on the bounce after getting the better of Washington by a head on their latest duel. He was nudged up five pounds in the handicap but clearly remains one of the ones to beat as he continues his meteoric rise up the handicap.
Another regular opposing contender, Eminency looks pretty well treated up against Washington and Quinault in the weights. He has been running to a decent level and with the handicapper having put him up the single pound, he may well be able to reverse the placings in this valuable contest.
Washington is in great order at home, and if reproducing his recent form in this top-class handicap then Kevin is hopeful for another bold showing from him.
To round off the day, the ever busy May Blossom lines up for the David O’Meara team in the British EBF Filles’ Handicap (3.25).
May is one of seven runners, drawn in stall five with previous winning ally Mark Winn booked.
Slainte Mhath comes in off the back of a strong win at Hamilton last week where she posted a career-best effort. She looks well-treated off the back of that comfortable win and if handling the quick turnaround, she would likely be a leading contender on Thursday.
Another who has been in good form this season is Cashew who has been lightly campaigned so far this year, running well on both of her starts back in May. She ran close to her best last time out and would be one to respect if able to reproduce that effort here.
May Blossom is in great order at present, and if seeing out the six furlong trip, David is hopeful of another solid effort.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish all three horses and their connections the very best of luck for Thursday’s races.