A twenty-runner maiden opens tonight’s card at Naas, and Sheila Lavery’s Mr Scarlet gets the nap to set punters off on the right foot.
The Dandy Man gelding made his debut at Fairyhouse and finished fourth behind experienced campaigners Noivado, Hunaina and one of today’s rivals, Anna May Wong, beaten just a length in total.
On that occasion, the selection had a terrible draw on the wide outside and had to be pulled back early and brought across to the inside rail.
He then showed real promise as he made progress to mount a late challenge and, but for a lack of racing room, may well have come out on top.
The drop back to five furlongs is of no concern and this draw looks reasonable. While there are a couple of interesting newcomers and plenty of potential improvers, the impression of Mr Scarlet’s first run suggests he could be well above average, and he can take this en route to better things.
Most Beautiful is due a return to the winner’s enclosure and can get it in the listed Yeomanstown Stud Dark Angel EBF stakes. David Wachman’s filly was a very useful juvenile but disappointed in her first three starts of this season.
However, she took a step forward last time when running Queen Catrine to a head in the Group 3 Brownstown Stakes at Fairyhouse. Held up early, she travelled strongly to challenge the eventual winner but may could find that little extra required deep inside the final furlong.
The drop back from seven furlongs to six should prove ideal, and she is preferred to Fort Del Oro, who was no match for British raider Divine in a Group 3 at the Curragh last time, but won her last two outings at this level. With ground to suit, she will be very hard to keep out of the first two.
Likely the shortest priced runner on the card will be Endless Drama, in the closing Follow Naas Racecourse on Facebook race, and anything bar an impressive display with be a disappointment from this classy sort.
Runner-up in last season’s Irish 2000 Guineas, he began this term with a fine third behind Belardo in the Lockinge, but disappointed when well down the field in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot.
His sole success in six races to date came on debut at this track and, with this race representing a huge drop in grade, he can make a successful return.
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