Doug Campbell’s 50 three-year-old Flat horses to follow for 2021
When Horses to Follow run, they are flagged under Daily Racing Tips http://www.theracinghub.com/category/horse-racing-value-tips/
1 Aldaary gelding
Territories x Broughtons Revival
Trained by William Haggas
Created a good impression in two starts in the space of a fortnight in October, winning both Novice contests over six furlongs on rain softened ground. At Yarmouth on his debut, he looked to know his job – travelling very nicely he only needed to be given a reminder around a furlong from home, where he quickened away to win comfortably by a shade under four lengths from the George Margason trained Media Guest.
The going at Leicester for his second win was officially Heavy, which some juveniles can struggle to cope with, not Aldaary though who absolutely scooted up by nine lengths and upwards in a field of six – from Pam Sly’s Special Mayson, with the experienced previous winner Dark Illusion back in third. Aldaary earned an official rating of 90 for those victories, and could well be open to further improvement.
He clearly acts well on a testing surface, and would probably not want the going on the fast side. His sire was runner up to Gleneagles in the 2015 Guineas and also won the G1 Prix Jean Prat, while his dam – although not as talented, managed to win three times up to as far as 1m 6f.
Aldaary is likely to be suited to further than he has raced over to date, and looks a nice prospect for the year ahead.
2 Alsephina filly
Sea The Stars x Pabouche
First foal of the German Listed winning Dubawi mare Pabouche, Alsephina ran two respectable races on the all-weather at Kempton and Newcastle in October. On her debut finishing a length and a quarter second to the promising Roger Varian trained Zaajirah, and then a six-and-three-quarter-lengths fourth to Sea Empress just nine days after that first effort.
That second outing may have come a little too soon after the Kempton run, but the winner is a smart performer in the making in what looked a well above average Maiden – so the run was no disgrace at all. Alsehina should stay at least ten furlongs, maybe even a mile and a half, with success in maiden/novice company appearing almost assured before hopefully going on to something better.
There’s also no reason to think that she won’t be as equally at home on turf as she is on an artificial surface.
3 Arousing filly
Kodiac x Enticing
Collected a Yarmouth novices’ contest over six-furlongs in mid-September on her only start as a juvenile, cosily getting the better of Sir Michael Stoute’s Ville De Grace (winner of her previous start) by a neck, with two-and-a-half-lengths and upwards back to the remainder. In fairness it may not have been the strongest of races in depth, but Arounsing did it nicely and there looks to be plenty more to come.
Her trainer knows the family well, having trained her half-sister One Master to Group 1 success, and just like that filly I expect Arousing to improve for age and experience. At this stage it’s impossible to suggest that Arousing will reach the same level as One Master, however I will be disappointed if she cannot add to her tally with a nice prize during 2021.
Six/seven furlongs may prove most suitable, but it would come as no great surprise either if she was tested over a mile at some stage.
4 Beheld filly
Frankel x Tendu
Roger Charlton is a trainer not known for rushing his two-year-olds, so when he has one winning first time out it often pays to take note for the future. That will hopefully be the case for Beheld, who was seen just the once during 2020 when taking a seven furlongs Novices event at Newbury of soft ground in the middle of August. She didn’t get the best of starts that day, ducking to the right in the first couple of strides after the stalls opened, and raced a little enthusiastically in the early stages.
However, Beheld soon got the message and travelled nicely in behind the leaders, before making her move on the run towards the final furlong. Ridden out she stayed on gamely to beat Clive Cox’s Whiskey And Chips by a head, with the William Haggas trained Good And Proper a further two lengths back in third.
It looked a fair contest, and two of the fillies that finished behind her later went on to shed their Maiden tags. Beheld looks a very useful filly in the making, she is by the unbeaten superstar Frankel, out of a daughter of Oasis Dream and Arabesque, with a solid Juddmonte pedigree going back generations.
She will stay at least a mile and should be monitored closely over the course of the season.
5 Beloved filly
Frankel x Love And Bubbles
Cost 350,000gns as a yearling, and that is understandable when you look at her pedigree, being by Frankel out of a French Group 3 winning mare who has also produced the winner of the 2012 Japanese Derby – Deep Brillante (by Deep Impact).
However, in two starts to date Beloved has failed to live up to her breeding or her six-figure purchase price. Beloved finished sixth of ten in a Doncaster Maiden over a mile in late October, possibly finding the soft ground a little too much on first appearance, finishing around five-and-a-half -lengths behind Vesela, and four weeks later was beaten a similar distance when fifth of eleven at Wolverhampton behind the Godolphin runner Mawenzi, running a little green and looking in need of more experience.
Hopefully a winter behind her will do Beloved plenty of good, and while she is unlikely to match the achievements of some of her relatives, I do feel she should be up to winning in Maiden company before hopefully stepping up in to handicap company.
6 Brunnera filly
Dubawi x Romantica
Brunnera was made favourite for her debut, when sent up to Newcastle to contest a Novices event over seven furlongs late in September, quite possibly on the back of some promising homework, but also down to her pedigree. She has some lovely bloodlines, being by Dubawi and out of a Group 1 winning daughter of Galileo.
In fact, her dam line is outstanding with her Granddam being the Breeders Cup Filly and Mare Turf & Group 1 Prix Jacques Le Marois winner Banks Hill, who herself was a daughter of the super brood Hasili. Brunnera ran a respectable race to finish a shade under three-lengths sixth to the Roger Varian trained Mashkoorah, giving the impression that she should benefit from the experience.
Her second run saw a little improvement when a fair third in a Newmarket Maiden behind Nebulosa and Subtle Beauty – again beaten just under three lengths. Her final start was probably a shade disappointing, beating only one horse home in a field of eight in a Nottingham Nursery over an extended mile on soft going, beaten almost five lengths in total behind Gordonstoun.
That can be forgiven as it was her third outing in under six weeks, two of which were on testing going – not an easy task for a two-year-old. Brunnera was dropped two pounds following that last run, and will start the new season on a mark of 73 which should be workable, and I feel she may well benefit from a sounder surface on turf than she encountered as a youngster.
Brunnera should stay middle distances at three, and hopefully there will be improvement to come.
7 Colonel Faulkner colt
Wooton Bassett x Kortoba
Archie Watson had a fair year during 2020, despite the interrupted campaign, boasting a total of 71 winners, 16 of which came from his juveniles. One of those 16 successes came from Colonel Faulkner, who he sent over to Deauville the week before Christmas to win a Maiden there worth over £9,300 to the winner – a great bit of placing by the Lambourn handler.
That was Colonel Faulkner’s third outing, after only making his debut late in October, when runner up of soft going at Doncaster to El Drama, that debut preceded a third spot in a Novices event at Newcastle around four weeks later.
The first two outings were over seven furlongs, with the Deauville win coming over half a furlong further, and I see similar trips or maybe a mile suiting him best at three – I don’t see him being better suited to further. Colonel Faulkner appears best suited to making the running, or at least being very close to the front and has been very well ridden in two of his starts to date by the 2020 sensation Hollie Doyle.
Further successes should hopefully come his way during 2021.
8 Copper Queen filly
Tamayuz x Coppull Moor
Steady progress in four starts last term over seven furlongs, finishing runner up on both her last two outings. At York in the second week of October Copper Queen was beaten just under three lengths behind Baradar, and may well have finished closer but for taking a keen hold in the early stages, while at Newmarket at the end of the month she lost out by a length to the Ed Walker trained Glenartney.
Both times she appeared to be well served by the rain softened ground, and that maybe something to bear in mind, although it is too early to suggest that she is ground dependent. She also ran a respectable fifth of nine on the Tapeta at Newcastle in September.
Copper Queen is unlikely to make any headlines during 2021 , but could make up in to a handicapper at the Northern tracks, and will start the year on a workable looking mark of 78.
9 Daddy Frank colt
Frankel x Smart Change
A very late foal (9 June) and a little surprising that he made it to the track as a juvenile, that said his trainer managed two runs at the backend of the year, finishing a neck second on both occasions. At Newcastle at the end of October on his debut over seven furlongs, he lost out to the Charlie Appleby trained Komachi who had the benefit of an outing earlier in the month.
While three weeks later over a mile he played second fiddle to the Ralph Beckett newcomer Lord Protector who sprung a 16/1 surprise. Two very respectable efforts that earned him an official mark of 82. There’s no reason to suggest that that he will be a horse solely for the artificial surfaces, and I await his turf debut with interest. A winter behind him looks sure to be beneficial and it will a disappointment if he cannot get off the mark as he gains more experience.
Daddy Frank will hopefully prove better than his current rating, he should also stay a little further in time.
10 Daramethos colt
Sea The Stars x Dark Orchid
Successful on his only start at two, when taking a Chelmsford Maiden over ten furlongs in the latter stages of November, beating Charlie Appleby’s Orientalism by half-a-length (value for more), it looked a fair contest and was probably a performance worthy of a mark in the high 80’s – so clearly a very useful performer in the making.
A mile and a half should pose no problems, in fact he holds an early entry in the Epsom Derby. That may seem a little optimistic at this stage, however it wouldn’t be the biggest of surprises if Gosden tested him in one of the trials in the Spring.
A likeable sort who looks sure to progress, and one whose development will be watched with keen interest.
11 Dhushan colt
Sea The Stars x Causa Proxima
Beaten by the minimum margin when failing to overhaul Star Caliber on his only outing last year – a one mile Maiden at Goodwood in early September. Both he and the winner look the type to progress over middle distances during their second season, and have the pedigree to do so.
Dhushan is a son of the outstanding Sea The Stars whose achievements on the track were some of the best in generations, while his dam was Listed placed over a mile at three in France. He was a 150,000gns buy at the Tattersalls October Book 2 yearling sales, which may turn out to be a decent purchase in today’s climate. Ten furlongs should be his minimum requirement initially in 2021, and when given a sufficient test may even turn out to be up to Pattern company.
I await his return to action with interest.
12 Divine Herald filly
Frankel x Heaven Sent
Sir Michael Stoute
Unraced at two, this nicely bred filly is one to look out for when she makes her debut. By the all-conquering superstar Frankel, out of the Pivotal mare Heaven Sent who was successful in Listed company and twice in Group 3 – as well as finishing a half-length runner up to the top-class French mare Goldikova in the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes of 2009. Divine Herald is a half-sister to leading handicapper Firmament – who was also third in Listed Class a few seasons back, and a full sister to the John Gosden trained three times Listed placed Seven Heavens – who later continued his career in Hong Kong where he won a valuable handicap.
Trips of around a mile should suit, and I’m sure her owners Cheveley Park Stud are hoping a successful track career lays ahead before retiring to the paddocks in Newmarket.
13 Fancy Man colt
Pride Of Dubai x Fancy
Has already proved a smart horse in three starts during 2020, ending his season with a victory in Listed company over a mile at Haydock in the first week of September. That followed a second place in another Listed contest over the same trip at Salisbury, beaten just a half-length by Clive Cox’s Cobh, and a victory in a Novices event over seven furlongs at Haydock on his debut in July.
All three wins came on rain softened ground which clearly suit Fancy Man, and he may be one to treat with caution on much quicker going. However, there’s no reason to think that he can’t continue to be competitive at a similar level or in Group 3 company, although further improvement would be required if he was to succeed at the highest level in Britain, that said he would be of interest if sent abroad for such a race.
A really likeable type that will hopefully pay his way for connection and followers of this list during 2021.
14 Ghumama filly
Dawn Approach x Bishara
Yet to get off the mark in four races to date, with her best efforts coming in Novice company on her debut over seven furlongs at Goodwood in September when a short head runner up to Neptune’s Wonder, and when five lengths third over a mile at Haydock behind Kings Prince the following month. I’m not convinced that the going at Haydock, or the similarly testing conditions at Newmarket when fourth behind Glenartney at the end of October suited the filly, it will be interesting to see her back on sounder underfoot conditions during the new season. Ghumama is bred to stay around ten furlongs, and will start the year on an official rating of 74 – which would put her in the ‘’ none too demanding handicap ‘’ category.
Ghumama won’t be making any headlines this year, but should be placed to the best of her ability, and will hopefully reward her supporters with a success or two over the Summer months.
15 Glesga Gal filly
Lope De Vega x Crystany
Shed her Maiden tag on her final start of five during 2020, when taking a Wolverhampton Nursery over seven furlongs in the third week of November. Glesga Gal also boasts a couple of runner-up spots over a furlong shorter – at Kempton on her racecourse debut in June, when beaten a length and a half by the Sir Michael Stoute trained Ville De Grace – and at Yarmouth in October on heavy going when touched off by half a length by Kindred Spirit.
She appears equally at home on turf or an artificial surface, although she has yet to encounter anything sounder than good to soft to date on turf. I don’t visualise genuine ‘good‘ ground posing any problems , in fact Glesga Gal may well be open to some improvement on it.
Glesga Girl also gives the impression that she will stay a mile, and hopefully will continue to pay her way in handicap company.
16 Graystone gelding
Dark Angel x Crown Of Diamonds
A 50,000gns purchase from the Craven Breeze Up Sales in June, but failed to get competitive (at big prices) in three novice events in the Autumn at Yarmouth – Kempton and Nottingham, finishing no closer than eight-and-a-half-lengths behind the winner. It is noticeable that on the second and third runs that Graystone raced quite freely after being slowly away, and he may well be the type that could benefit from some headgear.
It was also noted that at Nottingham that when keeping on in the latter stages he failed to gain the clearest of passages inside the final furlong, which may have cost him a length or two. Graystone’s form to date is fairly ordinary but hopefully he can benefit from a winter behind him, and will hopefully settle better for the unkindest cut since he last ran. A move into handicap company may also help ( he will start the year on an official mark of 66 ) and he may just be one that will pop up at rewarding odds one day.
Probably one of the more speculative inclusions in the list, but too soon to give up on him just yet.
17 Haven Lady filly
Belardo x Fork Handles
Three runs over seven furlongs in Novice company last season resulted in two fourth places and a third. On her debut in the final week of September Haven Lady caught the eye at Newcastle, running on well in the latter stages after appearing outpaced for much of the race, she was beaten under two lengths in total behind the winner Mashkoorah (Roger Varian), a fair first effort.
She failed to build on that next time out – when possibly not being suited to the soft going finishing just over seven lengths behind Cable News. On her last run there was also a valid excuse for her not finishing closer than the five-and-a-quarter lengths behind Evening Song, as she was bumped shortly after the start and became a little detached. Haven Lady was dropped four pounds for that last run, meaning she will begin 2021 from a mark of 68, that’s a rating I feel she is capable of winning from – particularly when stepped up in trip.
Northern handicaps would seem a logical starting point for her.
18 Highland Avenue colt
Dubawi x Lumiere
A beautifully bred colt by Dubawi, and is the first foal of the 2015 Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes winner Lumiere. Highland Avenue only made his racecourse debut in December, when narrowly failing to land odds of 1/4 over seven-furlongs at Kempton, beaten a neck by Henry Candy’s Run To Freedom (who had the benefit of experience having ran twice prior), with the pair pulling clear by over four lengths and upwards of their seven rivals. Improvement should come with experience, and Highland Avenue should have little difficulty in shedding his Maiden tag before being raised in grade.
Trips of around a mile would seem a good starting point at three, and he has every chance of staying ten furlongs, and while ideal going requirements are near impossible to be sure of at this stage – his dam was best served by Good / Good to Firm underfoot conditions.
Highland Avenue may well prove much better than that Kempton effort during the course of 2021.
19 Illustrator colt
Bobby’s Kitten x Amelia May
Got off the mark at the third time of asking, when taking a Novices event over seven furlongs at Newcastle in the first week of November, beating Archie Watson’s newcomer Super Over by a short head following a sustained battle inside the final furlong, with the pair pulling just over four lengths clear of the third placed – the Marco Botti trained Night Force. It was a step up on his two previous outings – a respectable third over six-furlongs at Wolverhampton in June on his debut (when looking a little green) and a fourth place at Chelmsford over seven-furlongs behind another son of Bobby’s Kitten (the Mark Johnston trained Silvestris) just two weeks before the Newcastle race.
Illustrator is likely to make up into a handicapper during the new season, for which he will start the campaign from a mark of 78 – which hopefully will prove workable for his trainer. He appears a genuine type from what we have seen, and should be open to improvement for a step up to a mile.
He clearly acts very well on an artificial surface, but there is hope that he can transfer that form to turf as his sire Bobby’s Kitten was high class on grass in the States, while his dam is a beautifully bred daughter of Dansili and the Group 1 winning Rebecca Sharp.
20 Jasmine Joy filly
Lope De Vega x Pecking Order
We only got to see Jasmine Joy the once last year when running a fair fourth at Doncaster in October behind the Ralph Beckett trained Vesela, she tracked the leaders travelling well and was still full of running coming inside the final quarter of a mile, however she didn’t find as much as may have been expected when the winner quickened from the front. Oisin Murphy wasn’t particularly hard on the filly in the latter stages, and all things considered she ran a very pleasing debut to be beaten less than three lengths in total.
Trainer James Fanshawe is not known for aggressively campaigning his juveniles and I would be quite surprised if Jasmine Joy fails to get off the mark in Maiden or Novice company this year before she is tested in better company. She is the first foal of Pecking Order who Fanshawe also trained to win twice in eight races and was also placed in Listed Class over a mile and a half back in 2016. Jasmine Joy should be best suited to 10f / 12f herself and looks certain to benefit from a winter behind her.
She is a filly that I like and will be watching closely over the course of the season.
21 Kaheall colt
Muhaarar x If So
Looked a winner waiting to happen following a fair third on his debut at Doncaster (soft) in October, beaten just a half-length and a head by El Drama and Colonel Faulkner. That proved to be correct when just three weeks later Kaheall shed his Maiden tag at Wolverhampton, narrowly getting the better of the John Gosden trained Emperor Spirit, and he followed up that success in the second week of December at Chelmsford, beating the Mark Johnston trained Toussarok by a length (more in hand than the margin suggested) in a six-runner affair.
He was unruly beforehand at Chelmsford and was mounted on the course, but I’m prepared to put that down to a little immaturity, and a gelding operation or some form of headgear may help his cause. All three starts came over seven furlongs and I don’t visualise him staying much further, he may even possibly be suited to a strongly run six furlongs.
Kaheall will start the year on a mark of 85, and looks open to further progress, whether on turf or an artificial surface and will hopefully bag his followers a handicap win or two during 2021.
22 Kings Prince colt
Kingman x Dynaforce
Despite looking a little immature, put up a very pleasing performance when taking a heavy ground Maiden over a mile at Haydock in mid-October on his only start last year, travelling well and battling on up the home straight to readily get the better of Regal Vega by two and a half lengths, with the same margin back to his stablemate Ghumama (another member of the 50) back in third.
He is the fifth foal – and third winner – of a mare that has produced the Listed winner over 1m 6f Aljazeera (by Frankel), and Kings Prince will hopefully be winning again when stepped up to middle distance/staying trips himself. He’s a strong looking type, and a good mover, and although the going was testing at Haydock I don’t feel that he will be totally ground dependent, with the only reservation if it came up very quick. It is noted that he holds an early entry in the Irish Derby, however he would need to improve considerably if he was to take up that entry.
A nice type nonetheless who is worth monitoring with interest.
23 Komachi colt
Kingman x Kamakura
Got the better of Daddy Frank by a neck at Newcastle at the end of October, following a fair debut at Kempton just over three weeks earlier, when three lengths third of nine behind Oo De Lally. Komachi showed some good qualities at Newcastle, after being headed inside the final furlong he battled back and was always holding the runner up close home.
Both starts to date have been over seven furlongs, but he gives the impression that he will stay at least a mile. He will start the season on an official rating of 83 which seems fair enough, and will start off in handicaps I would imagine. He’s a nice sort who should progress at three, and it will be disappointing if that rating does not go up.
Komachi – a 625,000gns yearling clearly act well on the Polytrack and Tapeta surfaces and it will be interesting to see how he fares when (if) tried on turf, either way further successes should come his way during the season.
24 Lady Percival filly
Sir Percy x Daffydowndilly
Steady improvement in three starts as a juvenile in the last ten weeks or so of 2020, ending her campaign with a comfortable four and a half lengths success over the extended mile at Wolverhampton in mid-December, staying on well in the final furlong and a half to beat the Michael Bell trained Big Kitty. It probably wasn’t the strongest of races, but Hughie Morrison’s filly did it nicely and may be the type to progress further when given a stiffer test of stamina.
She’s a half-sister to three winners (essentially handicappers) who won over trips up to two miles, and I would think that a mile and a half would be the minimum of her requirements during the new season.
Lady Percival won’t be winning any Classics, but will be placed to the best of her ability by a trainer who knows the family well and will hopefully prove worthy of her inclusion in the list with further successes.
25 Legion Of Honour colt
Wootton Bassett x Miss Vendome
Overcame an absence of around five months from a racecourse debut in June, to get off the mark over seven furlongs at Newcastle and comfortably account for the Kevin Ryan trained Captain Cooper by just over two lengths, with the promising Colonel Faulkner (a winner since) back in third.
That debut in the Summer – also over seven furlongs, came at Haydock when he ran Devious Company to just three quarters of a length, a pretty smart first effort – considering the winner that day later went on to be runner up twice in Group 2 company. Legion Of Honour gives the impression that he will stay a mile, although I would have reservations about much further and he looks open to plenty of improvement at three. He will start the year from an official rating of 95, but it would come as no surprise if he proved up to winning in minor Pattern Class.
A sound surface may always be his preferred conditions, and it was noted that he was taken out from an intended outing at Newmarket when the going turned soft.
26 Millie’s Angel filly
Dandy Man x Darkan
Didn’t see a racecourse until the first week of November, but then managed to fit in three runs in the space of nineteen days – all over six-furlongs. At Chelmsford on her debut she ran a respectable third of six runner beaten a shade under four lengths behind the useful (80 rated) performer Hello Me, despite looking as if the outing would do her some good.
That preceded a runner up spot at Wolverhampton to another 80-rated runner in the shape of Copinet, once again beaten around four lengths. While her third outing may have come a little too soon when finishing only sixth of nine starters at Lingfield to the David Evans trained Obtuse, who would go on to also win his next three races. Millie’s Angel’s future looks to be in run of the mill Northern Handicaps over six/seven furlongs, she starts the year from a workable looking official rating of 65 and we may not have seen the best of her just yet.
Hopefully this relatively cheap £9k purchase from the Breeze Up Sales in the Summer will reward her trainer and syndicate of owners with a success or two in the months ahead.
27 Monsoon Moon filly
Kingman x Scuffle
A beautiful Juddmonte Farms homebred filly by one of the sires of the moment in Kingman, out of Prince Khalid’s Listed placed mare Scuffle – making Monsoon Moon a half-sister to the 2019 St Leger winner Logician (by Frankel), and also to the Stateside multiple Grade 3 winner (and Grade 1 placed) Suffused. Monsoon Moon put up a decent performance on her debut at Ascot in the first week of September, finishing third of six behind another daughter of Kingman – the Roger Charlton trained Love Is You, who would later go on to win in Listed Class at Newbury the following month.
Her only other start came a fortnight later when Monsoon Moon easily collected a Novices event over a mile at Newmarket, beating her stable companion Haija by just over three lengths – landing odds of 2/5, with daylight back to three other rivals. She looks sure to progress with a winter behind her, and quite possibly enough to see her earn some black type of her own over the course of the Summer.
At the time of writing the sad news came through of the death of Khalid Abdullah, his passing is a huge loss to the racing and breeding industry worldwide. It is far too early to know what will happen to the Juddmonte empire, but should it continue it is a safe enough bet that Monsoon Moon has a future within their breeding barns, until then though there is business to be done on the track.
28 Miss Marble filly
Ifraaj x Lottie Dod
Simon and Ed Crisford
Put up a pleasing effort on her only start last year over a mile at Kempton in the second week of November, when sent off an unconsidered 25/1 chance, she kept on inside the final furlong and a half or so – without ever threatening to catch the winner – to finish a two lengths runner up to the Andrew Balding trained Auria.
The form looks fair without being spectacular, with the winner earning an official mark of 84 for that success. Miss Marble should have little difficulty in finding a suitable Maiden contest to get off the mark in the Spring, before stepping in to handicap company, and I would imagine that trips of a Mile – maybe even ten furlongs will prove to be her ideal distances.
I don’t see any reason why she can’t prove equally at home on turf either, and hopefully she can prove a successful & profitable inclusion in the fifty to follow.
29 Nastasiya filly
Archipenko x Nezhenka
Sometimes trips of around a mile can be quite a test for a two-year-old, in Nastasiya’s case the distance looked an inadequate test of stamina. In three outings at around the trip she did however manage a brace of third places, on her debut in late September at Haydock (good) when beaten two and a half lengths by Lady Hayes, and four weeks later at Newbury when nine lengths behind One Journey on Soft going.
On her final start of the season Nastasiya failed to get competitive at Wolverhampton, coming home fifth of the eight runners some seven lengths off the winner Sweet Bertie. She was clearly not quick enough to win as a juvenile, but did strike me as the type that maybe capable of better when faced with a stiffer test of stamina. Nastasiya will probably require a minimum of a mile and a half during her second season, and will be of interest when sent handicapping.
She starts the year from a rating of 73 which looks a fair assessment on what she has achieved to date, but it will prove disappointing if that is not a workable mark for her trainer – who also trained her half-sister – Nastenka, a few years ago.
30 Navegaon Gate colt
Frankel x Cascata
Finished a respectable fourth in a Nottingham Maiden on Soft going over an extended mile on his only outing of 2020, beaten a shade over seven lengths behind the winner Simons King – trained by Karl Burke. Navegaon Gate looked (and ran) as if in need of the experience, staying on at the one pace in the latter stages after being held up for much of the contest. Improvement can be expected at three for this half-brother to four winners, particularly when stepped up to trips of ten furlongs or more.
Looks more than capable of winning in Maiden or Novice company before moving on to something better.
31 Noman colt
Shalaa x Mathool
Hails from the first crop of the top class juvenile sprinter Shalaa , who in 2015 won the Group 1 Prix Morny and also the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes among six career successes from eight starts, but comes from a more stoutly bred female line with his dam – although only a modest Maiden herself – producing winners on the level at distances up to two miles.
Noman stayed eight and a half furlongs well at two, winning on the second of two outings at Wolverhampton in mid-October – beating the Richard Hannon trained Mickydee by a length and three quarters, with a further length and a quarter back to the Godolphin runner Folk Magic in third, this followed a third of six on his debut at Newmarket around three and a half weeks earlier when racing somewhat green in a Maiden won by Royal Champion. It is difficult to know what Noman’s ideal trip will be this year, but he wasn’t stopping at Wolverhampton and at least ten furlongs shouldn’t pose a problem.
He should prove up to winning a handicap or two.
32 One Ruler colt
Dubawi x Fintry
Already boasts a very decent level of form in the book, having won the Group 3 Autumn Stakes at Newmarket beating the Aiden O’Brien trained Van Gogh by a length and three quarters, with more in hand than the winning margin may suggest. That was the fourth of five starts as a juvenile, having earlier won a Sandown Maiden over seven furlongs and also finished third in Listed company behind New Mandate and Laneqash at the St Leger meeting.
Clearly a horse on the upgrade, One Ruler was pitched in to Group 1 company for his final start to contest the Vertem Futurity for which he was sent off a well backed 6/4 favourite. He produced another career best, but unfortunately lost out to the Jim Bolger trained Mac Swiney by three quarters of a length, on very testing going – officially described as Heavy. He clearly acted on it, however his jockey William Buick later said that he found it tough and would appreciate better conditions.
One Ruler stayed a mile well at two, and should have no trouble staying at least another couple of furlongs, further success should come his way at Group level and he may even take in one of the recognized Derby trials to see whether a supplementary entry for Epsom is worthwhile.
A very nice horse.
33 Rainbow Fire colt
Kodiac x Heroine Chic
Finished midfield in a 15-runner novices’ event at Newbury on his debut in July, beaten a shade over eight lengths behind his stablemate Guru, it looked a fair race and he showed the benefit of that experience on his only other outing of the year around ten weeks later, taking a Newmarket Maiden in gritty fashion by a length from the Andrew Balding trained Roscioli, keeping on well in the latter stages – with a further three and a half lengths back to Crossford in third.
Both outings were over seven furlongs, and the Newmarket race has some substance to it, with three of those that finished behind him that day going on to shed their Maiden tags before the year was through. Rainbow Fire gave me the impression at Newmarket that he may stay a mile at three, however his full brother Dhahmaan was untested at the trip, and his other full brother – Yimou was better suited to six furlongs so there is no guarantee.
Whatever proves to be his optimum distance he is sure to be placed to the best of his ability by his trainer, who is quite simply a master of his profession.
34 Ready To Venture filly
Kingman x Wonderstruck
Ready To Venture is a filly that I like a lot, and I’ll be amazed if she doesn’t progress considerably from her current official rating of 80 over the coming months. By one of the sires of the moment in Kingman, out of a Group 3 placed daughter of Sea The Stars she looks one to follow over the course of the season.
She was twice raced at two, finishing a three and a half lengths runner up to the Godolphin owned A’Shaari over seven furlongs at Newmarket towards the end of August, and two and a half weeks later took a Yarmouth Maiden over the same trip, beating Encounter Order by a length and a half, after which she was put away for the season.
Ready To Venture should comfortably stay ten furlongs at three, and has more than a sporting chance of staying a mile and a half, a trip that her dam was also successful over as a three year old. She has a lovely distaff line, with her Granddam – the Daniel Wildenstein owned Bordighera (by Alysheba) responsible for producing the top-class pair of Grandera and George Washington
While she may never scale the same heights as that pair, she should definitely add to her winning tally, before earning a place in the breeding paddocks of her owners Roy and Gretchen Jackson of Lael Stables.
35 Sammarr filly
Golden Horn x Ta Ammol
Looks a very nice prospect for the 2021 season judged on her only start as a two-year-old. Racing over a mile at Lingfield in late December in a Fillies Novice event, she was slowly away and held up towards the rear and looked to still have plenty to do as they turned for home. However, when switched to the wide outside in the home straight she came with a storming run to quickly stamp her authority, and the length and a quarter winning margin over Vital Force doesn’t tell the full story, with five lengths and upwards back to the rest.
Sammarr will stay middle distances at three, and I would imagine ten furlongs will be the starting point before stepping up to a mile and a half. She is open to plenty of improvement as she gains experience, and it will come as no surprise if she proves up to contesting Pattern Class contests.
I eagerly await her return to action.
36 Scampi gelding
Nayef x Preveza
Definite signs of greenness on his racecourse debut over a mile at Sandown in the first week of August, when fifth of eight behind Recovery Run – beaten a shade under six lengths in total. Scampi fared a little better 25 days later at Kempton, again over a mile – finishing third of eleven around four and a half lengths behind the John Gosden trained Uncle Bryn.
Those two efforts have earned Scampi an official mark of 72 to start 2021 from, which seems fair enough considering a mile appeared an inadequate test of stamina for him. Scampi should stay a mile and a half (and possibly further), being by Nayef out of an unraced daughter of the late Dalakhani, with more middle-distance influences further back in his pedigree.
I am more than hopeful that he has enough ability to pick up a handicap or two over the course of the season.
37 Sea Empress filly
Sea The Stars x Tayma
Most likely went into plenty of notebooks following her win in Maiden company over a mile at Newcastle at the end of October, her only outing of 2020. She dwelt leaving the stalls and was held up, racing a little keenly in the early stages but was soon travelling nicely, making smooth headway with around a furlong and a half to run and only needing to be pushed out to beat Roger Varian’s Teona by a length, with five and a half lengths back to the third placed Nushafreen. It looked a pretty fair Maiden, with the likelihood of a number of future winners in behind, and both the runner up and the fourth placed Alsephina make their way on to the fifty to follow.
Sea Empress looks a lovely filly to go into the new season with, she is the second foal of the Exceed And Excel mare Tayma, whose first foal is a full sister to Sea Empress and is rated around the mid 80’s, I will be surprised and somewhat disappointed if William Haggas’s filly doesn’t prove vastly superior to her sister.
Sea Empress should be suited to 1m2f/1m4f as a three-year-old and is a smart filly in the making.
38 Super Over colt
Pearl Secret x First Rains
Lost out to Illustrator by only a short head at Newcastle over seven furlongs on his only start to date, following a close battle throughout the final furlong, with the pair pulling over four lengths clear of the third placed horse – the Marco Botti trained Night Force. It wasn’t the strongest of contests in fairness but both the first two home showed a likeable attitude which will stand them in good stead for the future. Super Over looks a ready-made winner of a similar type of race, and will hopefully progress as he gest more races under his belt.
Should prove up to taking a handicap over the Summer months, and looks a reasonable purchase from the Guineas Breeze Up Sales at just 10,000gns.
39 Sweet Believer filly
Make Believe x Olivia Pope
William HaggasA €4,000 foal, rising to €10,000 as a yearling, with that figure jumping more than tenfold to €105,000 at the Guineas Breeze Up Sales last Summer. Sweet Believer clearly needed her debut at Newmarket at the end of October finishing only seventh of nine behind Glenartney, beaten around ten lengths. She showed the benefit of that first run some three and a half weeks later, when finishing a length and three quarters runner up to Isola Rossa at Lingfield.
Both those first two races were over seven furlongs, and she was stepped up to a mile back at Lingfield for her last run of the year. At first glance it appears a somewhat disappoint effort, sent off a well backed 8/11 market leader Sweet Believer could only manage to finish fourth, beaten a shade under eight lengths behind the winner Sammarr – who swamped her rivals with a stunning finish inside the final furlong. The winner looked a smart performer in the making that day, so Sweet Believer is certainly worth another chance.
She won’t be one of her trainer’s leading lights during 2021, but looks to have enough ability to win in Maiden or Novice company before stepping into Handicaps.
40 Teona filly
Sea The Stars x Ambivalent
A one-length runner up to Sea Empress over a mile at Newcastle on her debut, and franked that form in emphatic style when stepped up to a mile and a quarter back at the track next time out, when absolutely trouncing a field of Maidens by nine lengths and upwards. It was a very taking performance, considering the filly raced quite freely for most of the first half of the race, and she is clearly a talented individual.
Teona is bred to appreciate a mile and a half (and possibly a little further), her dam was a Group 1 winner herself back in 2013 when taking the Pretty Polly Stakes (1m2f) at the Curragh but also won over 1m4f , and her half-brother – Al Hilalee (by Dubawi) took the 2019 Group 2 Prix Hocquart at Chantilly over the twelve furlongs trip in a brief career. Given her pedigree I’m sure the plan would be to try and pick up some black type this season, and it may take a brave man to bet against her achieving that.
A really nice filly in the making.
41 The Thin Blue Line colt
Mehmas x Rahlah
From the first crop of the two times Group 2 winning two-year-old Mehmas, who made a very good start to his stallion career last season – with his son Supremacy recording a success in the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes, and Mehmas himself ending the interrupted campaign as the leading first season sire in Europe.
The Thin Blue Line won’t be winning any Group contests during 2021 – more likely a handicap or two in the North. Last season saw him race three times, finishing runner up twice at Catterick in September and October, before shedding his Maiden tag at Newcastle during the first week of November. At Newcastle he travelled well and made smooth headway to lead with around a furlong to go and was ridden out to beat Fircombe Hall (a winner the following month) by a length and a quarter – conceding that rival 22 pounds. The Thin Blue Line starts the year from an official rating of 78 and will hopefully be open to some improvement for his trainer and Middleham Park syndicate of owners.
He has yet to be tested at anything other than six furlongs, but was withdrawn from an intended start over seven so may well stay a little further.
42 Titian gelding
Iffraj x Lucelle
Showed the benefit of a gelding operation after two runs when taking a Novices contest over a mile at Newcastle in September, comfortably getting the better of the John Gosden trained Alpha King by a shade over a length. Behind him that day were a couple of future winners in the shape of Haveyoumissedme and Tara Iti, and Titian gave the impression that there could be more to come in the future.
His fourth and final start of the season was in a Doncaster Nursery which saw him run a fair third behind Heights Of Abraham and Valorant beaten a total of a length and a half. He appears to act on both turf and an artificial surface, but it may just be that the Tapeta may prove to be his preferred surface. Titian will have no trouble staying a mile and a quarter this year, and could well stay further.
Further successes will hopefully come his way in handicap company.
43 To The Bar colt
Tamayuz x Coachhouse Lady
Looking back at the brace of wins in the space of a week in December by To The Bar, it’s difficult to fathom how he was beaten so convincingly on his debut at Chelmsford in the second week of November. However, looking at the Chelmsford run – not only did To The Bar need the outing, as proven by signs of greenness, but he also managed to lose a hind shoe at some stage during the race which would go a long way to explaining matters. He’s a half-brother to three other winners best suited to six and seven furlongs, and both his own victories were at seven furlongs where he stayed on strongly with winning distances of five and a half and seven and a half lengths, so he gives every impression that at least a mile will be right up his street.
His sire Tamayuz was himself a top class miler, and while it’s impossible at this stage to suggest that To The Bar will be quite as good him I am confident enough to think that there could be a nice prize coming his way in 2021 – quite possibly in Pattern Class races.
44 Uncle Bryn colt
Sea The Stars x Wall Of Sound
A half-brother to two winners including the Group 3 winning two tear old Boomer trained by Tom Dascombe. Uncle Bryn is unbeaten in two starts to date, a Kempton Maiden over a mile on his debut at the start of September beating Godolphin’s Local Law by an easy looking three lengths, and a Wolverhampton contest for Novices over nine and a half furlongs – again winning easily and landing odds of 2/9 by four-and-a-quarter-lengths from Jaramillo.
They probably weren’t the strongest of races but Uncle Bryn won with plenty in hand, and looks the type to progress further at three – particularly over middle distances. I’ll be very surprised if his rating doesn’t improve from the 92 that he starts the campaign from, and I await his return to action with interest.
It would be nice to think that he may just be good enough to develop into a candidate for the St Leger in September.
45 Vesela filly
Frankel x Arabesque
Was never competitive, and finished down the field on her debut over seven furlongs at Newmarket in September, showing signs of greenness and clearly needing the run and was eventually beaten some 12 lengths back in tenth place of the 15 starters, behind the smart winner Saffron Beach trained by Jane Chapple – Hyam. It turned out to be a decent race in depth, and at the time or writing there have been six further individual winners to have come out of the race.
Vesela herself made amends next time out, stepping up to a mile on soft going at Doncaster she narrowly got the better of William Haggas’s filly Sea Sylph by a head after a sustained battle inside the final furlong. Vesela is a beautiful Juddmonte Farms homebred filly, and I’m confident that she can improve with a winter behind her. She gave the impression at Doncaster that ten furlongs shouldn’t pose a problem in the future, and she is in the very good hands of a trainer that can get thebest out of his fillies.
Further successes surely await Vesela during 2021.
46 Vunipola colt
Vadamos x Vizinga
Attracted support at big prices prior to his belated racecourse debut in November at Kempton over a mile, and ran a slightly odd race I thought. Slowly away and towards the rear in the first furlong, he then made rapid headway and was in front by the second furlong, where he stayed until entering the final quarter of a mile – before steadily weakening to finish fifth beaten a shade over three lengths behind the winner Echo Beach.
Vunipola showed signs of his inexperience that day, but also signs that he probably has the ability to win a race or two, maybe when sent handicapping this year. His only other outing last year came some six weeks later on the final day of 2020 at Lingfield, I’m not convinced that the drop back to seven furlongs was what he needed, and although he finished tenth of the twelve runners – he was only beaten a total of around four- and three-quarter lengths.
I imagine Vunipola will start the year back over a mile, and he can stay a little further in time, he’s no world beater but should make his mark in ordinary company. Could be worth a try on turf also.
47 Wakening filly
Dark Angel x Dancing Sands
Wakening looks a nice filly for her Majesty The Queen to take into the new season, winner of her only start in 2020. By Dark Angel who is responsible for any number of good performers on the track, including the likes of Battaash – Harry Angel – Mecca’s Angel – Lethal Force – Persuasive – and Sovereign Debt to name just a few. While her dam is a German Listed winning daughter of Dubawi, so Wakening has a fair amount to live up to on pedigree.
The Newmarket Maiden that she won in August – her only start to date, was over seven furlongs and looked a fairly decent contest, well I suppose there aren’t too many bad maiden races at HQ, she got the better of Martyn Meade’s Statement by a neck, holding a strong late challenge after making all of the running – with almost five lengths back to the third horse, Babindi. Wakening has probably already earned her place in the breeding paddocks on her bloodlines alone once her racing career is over, however it would be nice to think that with some improvement she would be up to picking up some black type this year.
She will stay at least a mile, and is in no better hands to have her talents nurtured to the maximum.
48 Warm Praise gelding
Hot Streak x Accede
Has achieved absolutely nothing in three starts in the latter stages of 2020, and is definitely the most speculative pick (by a long way) of the 50. Beaten, and well beaten at that at odds of 50/1 on his debut – finishing twelfth of fourteen over a mile at Kempton, which preceded a thirteenth of fourteen over seven furlongs back at the track starting at 200/1, and a last of twelve over seven furlongs at Lingfield on the final day of the year with an SP of 150/1.
Never closer than twelve and a half lengths behind the winners of those three races, clearly indicates only a modest level of ability (if any) and an opening official handicap rating of just 48 puts Warm Praise in the basement level of horses. So why include him in such a list? Well, Warm Praise was gelded before ever setting foot on to a racecourse, and three races in the space of just six weeks for a juvenile following such an operation may have been a little too much. Secondly, he’s a half-brother to three winners, all of whom won on turf – one of the three also won twice on an artificial surface, the best of them the useful handicapper Harvey Dent – who is now racing successfully in Saudi Arabia. Warm Praise is worth a try on turf himself, and a Winter behind him will do no harm.
He may just be up to winning a small race and hopefully will pop up at fair odds one day.
49 Water Iris filly
Pivotal x Sea The Bloom
Put up an eye-catching first run when staying on well from the rear to take third place, in a Novices event at Newcastle in the second week of November – beaten just over a length in total by Holy Endeavour and Turandot, when sent off an unconsidered 40/1 chance. Water Iris almost shed her Maiden tag on her only other outing, some four weeks later at Chelmsford when beaten a head by the John Gosden trained Miss Finland, this time starting a well backed 6/5 favourite. She has shown enough in those two races to suggest that she should have little trouble collecting a Maiden or Novices race, before stepping into handicap company.
Trips of a mile to ten furlongs should prove ideal, and Water Iris will hopefully pay her way over the Summer months.
50 Zaajirah filly
Shamardal x Lanansaak
Created a very good impression, and went into many notebooks for 2021 when winning her only start last year over seven furlongs at Kempton. Held up in midfield and travelling well, she made her move approaching the final furlong and quickened in good style to win going away by a length and a quarter to Alsephina, with Subtle Beauty a further neck back in third place.
It was an impressive debut and there looks to be plenty more to come from the filly, she has the makings of a smart performer. Zaajirah is the second foal of a daughter of Zamindar who sadly died in 2019, her first foal Montather (by Dubawi) also trained by Varian, has won two from three career starts and is currently rated 94.
I have little doubt that Zaajirah will surpass that mark and make up into a Pattern Class performer. Looking at her immediate pedigree I would think that a mile will be her starting point this term, although it should be worth trying her at further at some stage, as her Granddam Bunood (by Sadler’s Wells) stayed middle distances, and was runner up to Anna Pavlova in the 2006 Galtres Stakes at York over 1m 4f. There’s no reason to think that Zaajirah won’t act of turf herself, and whilst at this stage it is impossible to be 100% sure of going preferences, I do feel she wouldn’t any types of extremes.
It will be very interesting to monitor her early season entries.
©2021 Doug Campbell and The Racing Hub