Red Showgirl, advantaged with a 5lbs fillies’ allowance in the nine-runner Novice Stakes over five furlongs of Lingfield polytrack tonight, has a gilt-edged opportunity to make it third time lucky and is mount of Hollie Doyle; that’s always a plus even though husband-to-be Tom Marquand has put the ‘pocket rocket’ in the shade this past fortnight.
Both are at the very top of their profession, a delight to watch; our English racing scene is all the better for glamour and power which they provide in spades and are much-revered. Tom is setting a strong pace in the 2021 jockeys’ championship, which he’s determined to win for the first time.
Remember my opinion of him three years ago, ‘the best since Pat Eddery…?’
No praise could be higher and Hollie is the best female jockey we’ve ever seen, apart from 38-year-old veteran Hayley Turner whose riding recently has been a revelation; my comment was once given as ‘a cross between Lester Piggott and Walter Swinburn’ and ‘Daily Earner’ is zooming towards that firm objective of ONE THOUSAND WINNERS.
A truly remarkable statistic considering Hayley suffered badly with two accidents and I’m so pleased she came out of retirement to put a seal on a staggeringly-successful career.
Following a desperate nineteen lengths defeat around Catterick last month Red Showgirl reappeared seventeen days later at Wolverhampton where the Showcasing filly turned a huge disadvantage of the widest draw, and a tardy start, into a positive when settled in behind by Hollie, who has learned from plenty of experience in sprints, riding Archie Watson’s runners, ‘you can’t beat the draw!’
A 20/1 chance, on the back of her debut, Red Showgirl finished strongly but found Optimising two lengths too good; hot odds-on favourite Mercurial trailed four lengths away in third.
Slight improvement should be good enough to defeat obvious danger Cotai Hero, fourth in both outings last month and strongly-fancied by in-form Newmarket trainer Ed Walker. A frenetic tussle is in prospect.
Did you notice earlier in this piece, back on all-weather, my speciality?
Not much point specialising when none of six courses is being utilised!
I’ll turn it around in the next few weeks, the name ‘Bostik’ wasn’t banded about without good reason.
Selections, Ayr, 2.30 Tricky Business; Lingfield, 6.05 Red Showgirl (e.w); 6.35 Golden Rainbow (e.w).
Jeffrey Ross, horse-racing correspondent for WMN since 1983 when winning the most prestigious racing journalist award, Sporting Life Naps Table, before winning it a record number of six times collectively in the Racing Post, the current ‘trade’ paper, including 2019