‘Stars’ to shine before ‘Glen’ performs!

Glentaneous, denied a gilt-edged opportunity to win the prestigious ‘Cambridgeshire’ at Newmarket last month, because ground conditions were too firm, is one of nine ‘decs’ for an ‘aged’ handicap over ten furlongs of ‘good to soft’ Nottingham this afternoon. Brian Meehan’s charge is expected to go close on a yielding surface.

At the time I was vexed by the majority decision of a syndicate which owned this Gleneagles gelding but others have now been bought out and I’ll be advising the sole owner on future plans which are ambitious, especially if Glentaneous carries Andrea Atzeni to victory around the left-handed Midlands course.

‘We’ will be thinking in terms of another handicap with three-year-olds getting weight-for-age advantage before considering a career as a three-year -old hurdler, my idea!

That stems from an experience with Bassett Boy thirty-seven years ago when, after winning a over twelve furlongs at Brighton under Lester Piggott, took to jumping from ‘day one’ and threatened to be a ‘Triumph’ contender until being injured in a Doncaster ‘graded’ race won by See You Then, subsequent winner of the Champion Hurdle.

Bassett Boy won again in my colours over hurdles at Southwell!

On my time-handicap ratings Glentaneous is a similar proposition to my old warrior but there are a few ‘hurdles’ to overcome in the meantime. Time’ will tell!

Judged on his moderate effort last time at Doncaster when eighth under Ryan Moore, who wisely didn’t persist with a hopeless cause, Glentaneous should be offered by bookmakers and Betfair at sizeable double-digit odds and they will be accepted gratefully; Meehan’s yard is firing and so is ‘Glen’ having been vetted thoroughly ‘for sale’ purposes last week. Each-way will be the firm play.

During my first visit to a racecourse for about ten years I’ll enjoy espying paddock activity, especially for the Maiden Fillies’ Stakes over a mile which looks within compass of once-raced, Ralph Beckett-trained River Of Stars, mount of Rossa Ryan, outstanding this 2021 turf-flat season and product of the superby Richard Hannon complex in Marlborough.

My time-handicap firmly pinpoints River Of Stars, four lengths third to comfortable 1/4 winner Natasha over a similar distance around Kempton 32 days ago since when, apparently, the Sea The Stars filly has thrived; Beckett is a wizard with fillies.

Not a ‘cert’ by any means, Cet Horizon should be ‘on the premises’ on the back of a promising first-up effort and twice-raced Typical Woman must go close but River Of Stars gets my vote.

Later, during the obligatory Kempton polytrack ‘Wednesday-nighter’ under floodlights, what beats Owen Burrows’ Washraa in the eleven-runner Novice Stakes over six furlongs will win. I’ll sleep well tonight!  

Selections, Nottingham, 2.05 River Of Stars (e.w); 3.00 Glentaneous (e.w); Kempton, 5.30 Washraa (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