Put the kettle on, get the notebook out, and enjoy this feast of quality free content from our resident ‘2 y-o’ expert, Hugh Fowler…
Over to Hugh..
22nd – 28th April 2017
Better racing this week with two Class 4 fields from Newmarket and Newbury. At this early stage of the season it is hard to get a handle on the comparative level of quality between fields. As can be seen from my ratings I was not particularly impressed with the Newmarket maiden whereas the Newbury maiden looks better. When representatives from these two groups meet we will hopefully start to get some form of collateral measure of ability and an insight as to whether the early impressions are correct.
It is easy to get carried away with visually good early season performances but the Newbury race does not generally contain anything that goes on to rate much above 90 and this may well be a function of it being the first race in which anything half decent appears. It does however throw up a handful of open maiden winners. There is a question in my mind as to whether I have rated all these a couple of pounds higher than they deserve. Time will tell.
Richard Fahey and Charlie Appleby have been the outstanding 2yo trainers of the early weeks. Not unusual form Fahey with his 5f runners mopping up but further change from Appleby. Over the last 4 years he has gone from fat and clueless on debut to fit and competent. No need to be concerned that Richard Hannon has only had one 2yo winner, if anything this Richard Hannon has exaggerated his father’s style of letting them run when they are close to ready but being more concerned about them having an enjoyable first experience and if they happen to be fit enough and good enough to win fto so be it rather than targeting a debut win at all costs. Expect plenty of 2to winners and his debut wins to be at his favourite courses.
Race Reviews + Photos
18th April: READ HERE>>>
21st April: READ HERE>>>
29th April- 4th May 2017
A week in which the danger of making assumptions about 2yos without seeing them was highlighted as I selected both Rocket Man Dan and Take Shelter based on collateral form and screen views. Both were beaten into second. Both I would argue might have won with a Moore or Dobbs or Kingscote aboard but their absence should have been reason enough to avoid the buggers.
Just a note about the ratings I give them after I have seen them. Sometimes I am very unsure, maybe a poor picture, rugged until the last minute or a questionable effort from the jockey but early on I was advised by B2yor always to put a number on it. Sometimes it is a guess but most times I think it is a reasonably informed one. The ratings are meant to reflect what their potential is as 2yos. Some will continue to develop and rate higher as older horses. Many seem to end up more or less where I peg them but it is not an exact science.
This week for the first few races it was easy, small early season ready types mostly 60’s or lower but then suddenly at Doncaster there seems to be a field of better ones. Some of the good ones under-perform, some surprise me. It seemed to me that this was a better race and there should be at least 8 winners come out of it during the season. We shall see.
The week started with Corinthia Knight sprinting away from a field of saplings. Immediately talked up as a potential Ascot horse, no doubt the bookies will soon have him in at a short price and be rooking the gullible.
At Windsor David Evans finally got a notch on his bedpost with Yogi’s Girl who in retrospect looked better than I thought at the time.
Leicester was disappointing with Never Look Back proving to be more of a Corinthia Knight than a Home Of The Brave.
Doncaster provided better fare with the first three all looking to have decent potential. Perhaps the dark horse to be kept an eye upon was June Dog.
The Salisbury Fillies Conditions was an anti-climax and looks a weak renewal.
Race Reviews + Photos
24th April: READ HERE>>>
29th April x1 : READ HERE>>>
29th April x2: READ HERE>>>
That is all for this week’s post.
A REMINDER that Hugh posts his race previews in the comments on that day’s Free Daily Post. He is away from the 3rd-10th May so there may not be much in that period but when he gets chance to look, a preview is posted- so the daily posts are always worth a flick through around lunchtime.