Sell up to Nunthorpe task

York selections Friday 25th August

Onto Day Three at York and the feature event is a fascinating clash for the Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes, arguably Britain’s premier 5f event of the year. We have colts against fillies, older horses against the 3yo’s and even a 2yo and a big field to boot. I have a nap selection for the big race plus choices for two handicaps on the card. We had a cracking Thursday with headline selection Warm Heart (9/1) leading home our other bet Free Wind (5/1 each-way bet) in the Yorkshire Oaks landing an 84/1 exacta. Other each-way selections Northern Express (13/2) and Coco Jamboo (28/1) were also placed to put us well ahead for the meeting so far.

York 1.50: Wootton Sun & Bague D’Or

The big story to the opener is the fact that senior jockey Paul Hanagan takes his final ride on WOOTTON’SUN and this in-form handicapper can give the Warrington born jockey a fairytale finish.

The 4yo likes fast ground and racing prominently so everything should be in his favour today around York. He has already landed a big pot when winning the Old Newton Cup at Haydock and was just touched off in the Shergar Cup at Ascot last time. Whilst he continues to rise in the weights, he deserves to given his fine performances.

BAGUE D’OR has not been seen since running a fine second at Glorious Goodwood 2022 when trained by the now retired Chris Wall. This will be a big ask on seasonal debut, especially for a horse who gained both wins last term over 2f further.

However he won first time up in 2021, likes fast ground and is now with James Ferguson, a trainer who has already shown in his short career that he is able to ready one off a break. He has won over both 10f and 12f in the past and this is not a strong contest for the grade with the highest rated horse only 95, so this is not as hot a contest to return in as might normally be the case.

York 3.35: Bradsell

Having raced entirely at 6f in his short career, I think BRADSELL proved that pure speed is his forte and that 5f is his optimum trip when landing the Group 1 Kings Stand Stakes on his first attempt at the minimum trip at Royal Ascot.

He saw off Highfield Princess amongst others that day and I see no reason why he can’t repeat the feat today on a track which should play even more to his strengths. He is ideally drawn near to the other market rivals in the centre of the track, so Hollie Doyle should get a nice lead into the race.

His earlier form saw him win the Coventry at Royal Ascot, but earlier this season he travelled like much the best horse in the Sandy Lane over 6f at Haydock before fading late on. There was no weakening at Ascot last time and I expect him to outspeed the others this afternoon.

York 5.20: Bajan Bandit

Very progressive this summer over 7f since joining Grant Tuer, BAJAN BANDIT is worth chancing back up to a sharp mile this afternoon.

He looked impressive on racecourse debut for Richard Hannon when winning at Salisbury at this time last year, but failed to go on from that in two subsequent outings. Gelded over the winter, he raced too keenly on return when down the field over a mile at Musselburgh.

Made more use of and dropped in distance, he responded by making all to win at Haydock next time. Since then he has been ridden with a bit more restraint. He was unlucky in running when only fourth next time back at Haydock but made no mistake when winning here at the last meeting. He found plenty for pressure that day and seems to be settling better, so I think he is worth a go back at a mile given the prevailing fast ground.

Recommended bets:

1pt each-way – Wootton’Sun – 1.50 York – 11/2 general (most bookies 1/5 odds 1st 4)

1pt each-way – Bague D’Or – 1.50 York – 8/1 general (most bookies 1/5 odds 1st 4)

1pt each-way – Bradsell – 3.35 York – 5/1 general (most bookies 1/5 odds 1st 4)

1pt each-way – Bajan Bandit – 5.15 York – 14/1 Bet365 (1/5 odds 1st 4)

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