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Friday 8 May 2015

Hawkeyethenoo to roll back time !

The Victoria Cup on Saturday is the competitive race that you would expect it to be but there is one horse who is beginning to get some respite from the handicapper and that is Hawkeyethenoo who gets in here at the bottom of the handicap on a mark of 93 with Hector Crouch taking off a further 7lb, so he will be running off and actual weight of 8-1 or a mark of 86.

You may think he is getting a bit old in the tooth but he is a former winner of this race and he often runs well here and as we have seen in these sprints this year age is no barrier.

When he won this race back in 2011 as a 5yo he was rated 96 and his winning distance was a comfortable two and a half lengths. The going was Good to Firm that day and the actual weight he carried was 8-7 with the time recorded being 1m 26.49s.

In October he returned to the track for the 14th time over this distance in a Class 2 Handicap off a mark of 100, actual weight carried 9-6, It was Good to Firm that day and he was drawn in stall 18 of 18. He was settled out the back on the rail before running on to be beaten just one and a quarter lengths, despite a troubled passage, in a race time of 1m 26.44s and the Racing Post analysis read as follows :
Steadied start and switched to race near side, held up, progress 2f out against near side rail, stayed on well final furlong, gaining at finish.

This season he has had two races and on his latest start at Haydock his rider adopted similar tactics to his Ascot run and he was running on at the end despite not having the clearest of passages and hopefully that will have set him up for a decent run in this.

This time last season he was running in Group 2's over 5f and 6f which is probably a bit short for him now and in 2013 he wasn't beaten far in both the Group 1 Golden Jubilee here and the Haydock Sprint Cup behind Lethal Spirit and Gordon Lord Byron respectively. He won the Stewards Cup off 103(top weight) as a 6yo and has consistently run well in big sprints through his career.

He is drawn 16 of the 29 runners tomorrow so he should be able to get plenty of cover. He should also get the strong pace he needs as Outback Traveller in stall 13 should lead, whilst Zarwaan 14, Bronze Angel 18, Lulu The Zulu 19, Dream Spirit 20 and Heavens Guest 22  all like to race prominent so there's plenty of pace about him. 

Seven of his 8 wins have come when  he's carried 9 stone or less and his last 4 wins have come in fields of 20 or more runners as he seems to like coming through horses. It's now just a case of whether his young jockey is able to steer him through the gaps.

Although he has run well on ground described as good to firm in the past he ideally needs the ground to be on the soft side of good. The going is currently good at Ascot however there has been a bit of rain about as well as racing on Friday night so hopefully the going will be just about right.

Once again I am not saying he will win but he is decent odds for a horse of his ability and as several bookmakers are paying 5 places you should take advantage of that offer as he will pay decent odds for a place with his current odds being 40/1. 

Good Luck !