Pundit Rory Paddock looks through all 28 races of this years four-day St Leger Festival from Doncaster and finds five runners he thinks are solid each way shouts that could go very close. WEDNESDAY:
16:00 - Cazoo Scarbrough Stakes (Listed Race) (Class 1)
TARBOOSH has a fantastic record at Doncaster with two wins and a second from three starts here. He won this race last year and although he returns off perhaps a worse campaign this time around it’d be foolish to ignore his obvious claims of finishing in the money.
17:00 - Visit Doncaster Handicap (Class 4)
Another former course winner lines up at Doncaster on day one of the four day Leger meeting this time in the “lucky” last. WENTWORTH FALLS has picked up a handful of victories here in the past and has gone well on this card previously. The nine year old’s last victory came at this venue and now with 9lb less weight on his back and in Class 4 company all roads point towards a solid performance.
13:10 - Silk Series Handicap (For Pro-Am Female Jockeys) (Class 3)
We kick off day two’s action with the female jockeys taking centre stage in the opener. I’m hoping not only will we see success for a female jockey but also a female trainer in the form of Ruth Carr. She saddles the six year old EMBOUR who went well at Catterick two starts back. Having competed mostly in Class 2 races this term a drop in grade should be of benefit and although he’s never tasted victory at Doncaster has placed at the course previously. Young jockey Laura Pearson takes additional weight off the horses back and has shown glimpses that she could be the next big thing in female riders.
13:45 - Portland Handicap (Class 2)
I can’t take all the credit for this selection on Saturday with fellow PFTP pundit Chris Connolly raving about the chances of JAWWAALL in the Portland handicap on the latest episode of our Turf Talk Podcast (Click here to hear more) In fairness to Chris it’s hard to disagree with his sentiments. The Michael Dods yard are doing well of late and after a positive effort at Haydock the trainer seems to have his six year old sprinter in prime condition. With a trio of former course successes in the bag he will relish a return to Yorkshire and although he carries a sizeable weight may have enough in the locker to overcome his current rating.
17:10 - Vermantia Handicap (Class 2)
At the time of writing this there’s still a field of 27 entries remaining for what will be the last race of the entire meeting however I feel relatively confident that the Saeed bin Suroor trained Dubai Legacy is going to line up. The gelding has raced predominantly in Meydan this year but returned to UK soil with a solid third at Newmarket back in May. The form of that run looks solid with the winner subsequently finishing as a runner up in a group race and the second going on to win at Glorious Goodwood. The five year old should strip fitter for that performance and with Oisin Murphy booked for the ride Godolphin’s runner has very strong claims.
written by Rory Paddock