Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 December 2014

Mighty Magnus is the answer

Magnus is tipped to show his rivals two clean pairs of hooves in York's Thursday feature - the five-furlong Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes.

Bookmakers seem to have over-reacted to a poor showing in the Golden Jubilee Stakes when pricing up this race, which leaves eagle-eyed punters with a chance to obtain a proper slice of value.

Every man and his dog now knows how strong the Australian sprinters are in comparison to our home-based speedsters.

And this Peter Moody-trained five-year-old looks another potential top-notcher from Down Under on the evidence of a cracking run behind Miss Andretti in the King's Stand Stakes.

He has around a neck to find with Dandy Man, who finished second in the Royal Ascot race, but seems more versatile as regards underfoot conditions and is certainly a more tempting price. Encouragingly, Magnus showed enough natural speed to lead the King's Stand field entering the final furlong and a reproduction of that form would make him hard to pass on this easier course.

Kerrin McEvoy will take the reins and his assistance in the saddle is another definite positive that should not be ignored.

Earlier on the card, a competitive field of promising juveniles go to post for the Jaguar Cars Lowther Stakes.

With so many unexposed and lightly-raced youngsters on show, a relative upset can never be totally discounted.

However, Sir Michael Stoute's Visit looked something out of the ordinary when slamming her rivals in the Princess Margaret at Ascot, producing a rare turn of foot to settle the issue.

That triumph was achieved on good to soft ground but there is no reason why this daughter of top-notch speedball Oasis Dream should be inconvenienced by a faster surface.

She improved markedly on her debut when recording her first win last time and any further progress would make her a fierce opponent.

Dark Angel brings Group-race form to the table in the £300,000 St Leger Yearling Stakes and is the one to beat in this richly-endowed contest.

The Barry Hills-trained youngster was not beaten far in the Windsor Castle at Royal Ascot and improved on that to finish an excellent fourth behind Winker Watson in the July Stakes at Newmarket last time out.

A reproduction of that effort at Headquarters should see him firmly involved at the business end.

Smart Enough was ultra-progressive last season and can defy a long absence to land back-to-back runnings of the Addleshaw Goddard Stakes.

His only subsequent outing since that win came in the Cambridgeshire last back-end.

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