JOHN SMITH’S CUP
BEER we go again with the John Smith’s Cup where horses aged older than five have a poor record. Only one has won in the past decade so Scarlet Dragon, Waarif, Restorer, Another Touch and Aasheq all have to go.
Coming back from a break hasn’t been a good idea either, which is a negative for My Lord And Master.
The past five winners all had at least 9st 3lb on their back. So we can cross out plenty of them — Buzz, Stylehunter, Exec Chef, Fayez, Francis Xavier, Jazeel, Hortzadar and Big Kitten.
It’s not easy to come here on the back of a poor run, which spells bad news for Mordin, Pivione, Aquarium and What’s The Story.
The draw has played a big part and you usually want to come from a high stall but two very low numbers have scored in the past four years.
We haven’t had a winning favourite in the past decade, which is a negative for Mountain Angel unless Roger Varian’s runner is replaced at the head of the betting.
That leaves us with a shortlist of Afaak, Original Choice and Setting Sail.
SETTING SAIL gets the nod after winning well over this distance at Newmarket last time. Afaak was brilliant when winning the Royal Hunt Cup but has stamina to prove at this longer trip, while Original Choice has been out of sorts this season.
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