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Pearl Secret tipped to land Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes at York Racecourse
Pearl Secret, unbeaten in four starts and two from two at York, can strike it rich on Knavesmire tomorrow by clinching the £250,000 Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes.
A winner on his debut on this course last October, Pearl Secret has always been held in the highest esteem by Thirsk-based David Barron, who is not a man to describe his geese as swans without good reason.
This year the striking colt has looked hugely impressive, winning all his three starts, most recently in Listed company at Sandown.
Pearl Secret obviously faces a sharp rise in class tomorrow, taking on tried and tested high-class horses in Group 1 company. Barron shared top-spot in this race in dramatic circumstances in 1997 when Coastal Bluff, whose bridle broke leaving jockey Kevin Darley without brakes or steering, dead-heated with Ya Malak, trained by David Nicholls and ridden by his wife Alex Greaves.
Such drama is unlikely to be repeated this time, but if Pearl Secret is as good as Barron thinks he is, there is every chance he can come out on top in a highly-charged event.
Tomorrow could be a good day on Knavesmire for North Yorkshire trainers. Richard Fahey has double prospects with Barefoot Lady and Majestic Moon, while Kevin Ryan has a serious chance of lifting the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Gimcrack Stakes with Blaine.
A brother to Bogart, a high-achiever last season as a juvenile and the winner of the big sales race at this meeting, Blaine made a successful York debut last month when winning what looked an above-average maiden in likeable style.
A colt who is held in high regard by his Hambleton trainer, Blaine faces a steep rise in grade tomorrow, but Hambleton-based Ryan knows what it takes to win a Gimcrack, having taken the honours with Amadeus Wolf in 2005. Barefoot Lady, a winner on this course last month, goes for the Sky Bet Strensall Stakes and is expected to go well under Tony Hamilton.
Fahey has few tougher performers than this four-year-old filly, who showed typical fighting qualities when gaining her latest success in Listed company by a neck from Emirates Queen.
She faces more formidable opposition this time, but whatever beats her will know they have been in a race.
Malton -based Fahey has three runners in the tyregiant.com Nursery over six furlongs and the pick of them promises to be nap selection Majestic Moon, a winner by five lengths at Ayr on his second and latest start.
He looks to have been allocated a fair rating for his handicap bow and is fancied to have the edge over his stablemates Diggory Delvet, who has each-way prospects, and Mary's Daughter. The main danger may well come from another North Yorkshire challenger, Kamchatka, trained by Alan Swinbank and an impressive winner at Pontefract earlier this month.
Roger Charlton, who sent out the potentially top-class Dundonnel to win on Knavesmire yesterday, can follow up with Silver Lime in the Sky Bet Mobile Handicap, which opens the card.
Lightly-raced, Silver Lime has won two of his four career starts and was recently successful at Goodwood on his first outing since May. He is open to further improvement and this looks a good stepping-stone for him.
John Gosden, who has a wealth of talent at his disposal at his Newmarket yard, has a smart-looking prospect in Bright Strike, who finished a highly encouraging third on his debut at Newmarket four weeks ago. He warrants serious respect in the Sky Bet Mobile Convivial Stakes.
Tom O’Ryan’s selections
2.00 Body And Soul (NAP), 2.30 Newfangled, 3.05 Kahruman, 3.40 The Fugue, 4.15 Sequence, 4.50 Shesastar.
Today’s other meetings: Bath, Ffos Las and Folkestone.
2.00 Silver Lime, 2.30 Blaine, 3.05 Barefoot Lady, 3.40 Pearl Secret, 4.15 Bright Strike, 4.50 Majestic Moon (NAP).
Tomorrow’s other meetings: Ffos Las, Goodwood, Hamilton, Newcastle and Newmarket.