Ray Flanagan with Ascot selections
Expert Eye (12-1) was a winner yesterday.
Ascot 4.20- Vazirabad
Outstanding renewal of the Gold Cup.
The top two are worthy champions , however Vazirabad has been a brilliant horse in France and Dubai and I am prepared to take a chance he can upset the applecart today. His two greatest victories have come at Meydan beating Big Orange on 2017 and Rare Rhythm a few months ago. If the ground is not too quick might have the best turn of foot when it comes to the crunch.
Ascot 5.00- Bond Street and Landshark
Bond Street might be another typical O’ Brien improver. One of the lesser lights of Ballydoyle as a juvenile he started mediocrely this season prior to a good Curragh second on Guineas weekend before winning a conditions race at Leopardstown a fortnight ago. Appears to be steadily improving and may be better than he has shown to date.
Landshark is highly regarded by his trainer and while he has plenty to find on paper his price is tempting. Jessica Harrington’s representative looked useful on debut last season and the fact she pitched him into the 2,000 Guineas this season indicates he is showing plenty at home.
Ascot 5.35- Cross Counter and Dubhe
We will go with the Appleby pair. Cross Counter is a strong well made son of Teofilio. Two promising efforts winning on tapeta last winter and nothing wrong with Sandown reappearance conceding a stone to useful type. Queens Vase entry suggests stamina can be relied upon and interesting runner.
The same can be said of stablemate Dubhe who will certainly relish the trip and has leading form credentials on the basis of Sandown win on April. High draw and quick ground raise doubts but worth a small play.
Leopardstown 7.35-Bonninton Lass
Eye-catching mid-division effort at Fairyhouse last time. Out of the weights this evening but probably better than present mark and stable in fine form after surprisingly winning the Hunt Cup yesterday.
0.75 pts win-Vazirabad-4.20 Ascot-5-1 General
0.75 pts ew-Bond Street-5.00 Ascot-14-1 General
0.5 pts ew-Landshark-5.00 Ascot-40-1 General
1 pt win-Cross Counter-5.35 Ascot-8-1 General
0.5 pts win-Dubhe-5.35 Ascot-12-1
0.5 pts ew-Bonnington Lass-7.35 Leopardstown-20-1 General