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Malton handler Richard Fahey teams up with Koukash at Chester
Richard Fahey has strong prospects of enjoying a bumper harvest at Chester tomorrow.
The Malton trainer is fielding a talented squad of runners and is fancied to complete a treble with Area Fifty One, Gabrial and Calaf, all owned by Dr Marwan Koukash, who likes nothing better than to have winners on the Roodee.
Area Fifty One was bought out of Willie Muir’s yard at last autumn’s Newmarket sales and is considered a horse with a bright future.
He was a dual-winner last season, when he was admirably consistent.
The opening M&S Money Handicap is his starting point and it would come as no surprise to see him go close.
Gabrial was a winner at this fixture last year as a juvenile when he won two of his three starts.
He re-appeared at Musselburgh last month and finished a respectable seventh to his stable mate Chapter Seven after meeting trouble in running.
A big, powerful galloper, he should relish every yard of the seven-and-a-half furlongs of the Boodles Diamond Eternity Handicap and is awarded the nap vote.
Calaf was a winner of an apprentices’ race at Doncaster last Saturday and consequently escapes a penalty in the Cheshire Oaks Handicap.
He was a winner on this course last season and is expected to go well for Jamie Spencer, who rides all three of the Fahey-Koukash runners.
Fahey saddles Glen’s Diamond in the Betfair Huxley Stakes, and this course winner, who wintered in Dubai, is not to be underestimated.
But preference is for the classy Wigmore Hall, who has contested Group 1 races on his last half-dozen starts and won one of them in Canada.
Although he was disappointing in the Prix Ganay in France on his latest start, Wigmore Hall should appreciate this drop in class.
Mickdaam, a Derby entry for Fahey, runs in the MBNA Chester Vase and this useful colt, narrowly beaten in a valuable race at Newmarket recently, is entitled to respect.
Preference is for Call To Battle, an Irish raider, trained by John Oxx.
Winner of two of his three starts last season, Call To Arms finished a good second in the Group 3 Ballysax Stakes at Leopardstown on his re-appearance.
He looks the type to progress well this season.
At Goodwood, Sir Henry Cecil can draw first blood in the Charlton Cheese Maiden Stakes with Air Traffic.
Tom Queally rides this promising colt, who finished runner-up on his only start last season.
The fact that he has been kept in training by Cecil for another stint looks significant.
Expert Fighter, winner of one of his two races as a juvenile last season, can score for Godolphin in the 32Red Casino Handicap, while Seamus Shindig should have benefited from his recent comeback outing and is fancied to land the Reheat International Handicap.
Henry Candy’s gelding is a previous course and distance winner.
1.35 Area Fifty One, 2.05 Wigmore Hall, 2.35 Call To Battle, 3.05 Gabrial (NAP), 3.40 Lucky Beggar, 4.15 Profile Star, 4.45 Calaf.
1.45 Air Traffic, 2.20 Gravitate, 2.50 Expert Fighter, 3.20 Black Monk, 3.55 Afnoon, 4.30 Seamus Shindig, 5.05 Twice Bitten, 5.35 Pursuitoexcellence.
Tomorrow’s other meetings: Kelso, Newton Abbot, Wincanton and Yarmouth.
Today’s meetings: Chester, Ffos Las, Kempton, Southwell and Stratford.