Hollie Doyle talks through her plans for Thursday and Friday with a trip across the Irish Sea to Leopardstown before a flight back to England on Friday and a quick drive to Newmarket for an exciting book of rides
Sky Sports Racing’s ambassador Hollie Doyle flies to Ireland on Thursday to ride Archie Watson’s Sherbet Lemon in a Group Three before linking up with her Royal Ascot winner Amtiyaz at Newmarket on Friday.
Sherbet Lemon can show fizz in Irish raid
Archie Watson has done exceptionally well in Pattern races in Ireland and the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Stanerra Stakes (7.10) at Leopardstown on Thursday has been the plan for some time for Apple Tree Stud’s filly SHERBET LEMON .
The winner of the Listed Lingfield Oaks Trial on only her third start, she has been working nicely with me at Archie’s since finishing unplaced in the Cazoo Oaks a month ago and the step up to 1m6f will be ideal for her.
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She’ll be wearing cheekpieces for the first time in this Group 3 but that’s not because she’s in any way ungenuine. She’s a very relaxed filly so we’re hoping the headgear might just give her that vital edge.
Being a Group 3 winner already, Roger Varian’s Believe In Love sets the standard but has to give us a lot of weight, while Aidan O’Brien’s Galileo filly High Heels must be respected after running well at this level at Cork last time. They are my obvious dangers.
Delighted to reconnect with Mullins
After enjoying success on True Self this year, it’s nice to get another good ride for her trainer Willie Mullins on BABY ZEUS in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF ‘Nasrullah’ Handicap (6.40) at Leopardstown.
This gelding made a winning debut for Willie at the Curragh in May when he wore a tongue-tie for the first time and must defy a 9lb rise in this valuable 10f Premier handicap. Like the Irish assessor, I thought he was impressive that day, too, so it will be a good test of his progress off his new mark of 94.
I’ll be flying out of Heathrow on Thursday morning and will be staying in Ireland overnight as there are no late flights back. I’m due to land back at Heathrow early on Friday morning and will be driving straight to Newmarket for an exciting book of rides on the July Course.
Out for a Royal repeat with Amtiyaz
Achieving my second Royal Ascot winner on my boss Imad Alsagar’s AMTIYAZ was a pleasant surprise, as all his form going into the Copper Horse Handicap had been on the All-Weather.
He thrived on the fast ground that day and showed he has an appetite for a battle when holding Dubious Affair. He’s such a tough little cookie so I’m expecting another big performance from him.
A 4lb rise in the ratings is fair enough for a John and Thady Gosden horse who remains unexposed on turf and I’m hoping to get a nice tow into the race from a good draw in stall 2 in the bet365 Trophy (3.00).
Drop in grade for Chesham fourth
SWEEPING’s fourth in the Listed Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot was a big performance, especially considering the reputation that Aidan O’Brien’s winner Point Lonsdale brought into the race.
He’s come out of that very well and has his sights lowered in the Weatherbys Bloodstock Pro British EBF Maiden Stakes (1.15) at Newmarket.
Maidens at the big meetings are never easy to win and you never know what you might bump into, but he brings the strongest form into the race and has that vital edge of experience over some of the well-bred runners from the big yards.
Dancing partner should enjoy step up in trip
I won on Dean Ivory’s DANCINGINTHEWOODS over 6f at Leicester in April and he races off just a 3lb higher rating in the 4.10 at Newmarket. The step up in trip could be just what he needs as he’s been doing some good work late on in subsequent races.
BENEFIT STREET is another horse I know well, having finished second on him at Yarmouth last autumn, and Robert Cowell’s sprinter is fresh from his course and distance win. Like Dancinginthewoods, he’s only 3lb higher and can take the slight step up in class in his stride in the 4.45.
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Knights win his Richard battle
CORINTHIA KNIGHT has become something of a celebrity at Archie Watson’s Saxon Gate Stables in Lambourn so it was wonderful to partner him to his 13th career success in the King Richard III Handicap at Pontefract on Tuesday.
He’s been such a great servant to his owners, Ontoawinner, with the All-Weather Championships 3YO Final and two Listed successes on his CV. His career earnings are now approaching £350,000 and, at the age of six, there’s a few more miles left on the clock.
Hollie Doyle was talking to Sky Sports Racing’s Simon Mapletoft