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Pontefract and Wolverhampton previews: Zubeida and SDS a potent combination

| 27.06.2016

David Metcalf | June 27, 2016

Zubeida poised to open account at Pontefract

Zubeida was a big eye-catcher last time out and can take advantage of what looks a lenient mark to open her account in the 1m 4f handicap at Pontefract today (16:10).

The Ismail Mohammed trained filly has only had four starts and shaped nicely on the third of those when a not knocked about fourth of 10 to Atone over 1m 2f at Goodwood.

Zubeida showed enough to suggest she could prove a different proposition when going down the handicap route, and that view was confirmed when daughter of Authorized finished fourth of 12 at Newbury earlier in the month.

The three-year-old travelled strongly for much of the contest before staying on to be nearest at the finish an beaten just over four lengths.

It was a performance full of promise, and one which suggested Zubeida was ahead of her lowly rating of 68.

York Races - Dante Festival - Day Two

With champion jockey Silvestre De Sousa now taking over in the saddle, and the cheekpieces fitted for the first time, this looks a great opportunity for Zubeida to get off the mark.

Queen weighted to rule again

In the 6f handicap (15:40), Gran Canaria Queen can cash-in on a drop in the weights to land back-to-back runnings of the contest.

The Tim Easterby trained mare was in good form last year, winning at Ripon and York before easily landing this race by 2 1/4 lengths off a mark of 86.

Gran Canaria Queen made all to score with tons in hand, and went to to finish a fine a 3 1/2 length fifth of 13 to Don’t Touch in the Great St Wilfrid at Ripon off 94.

The seven-year-old is now able to race off a reduced rating of 77, 9lbs lower than when bolting up in this 12 months ago, and that makes the daughter of Compton Place dangerously well-treated on the pick of her form.


Gran Canaria Queen also has the services of Rachel Richardson in the saddle, who is good value for her 5lb claim, and taking it into account looks weighted to run a huge race.

Pontefract selections

14.00: Wotabreeze
14.35: Love Dreams
15.05: Aprovado
15.40: Gran Canaria Queen (NB)
16.10: Zubeida (NAP)
16.40: Get Up And Dance
17.10: Terhaal

City Of Ideas can collect at Wolverhampton

Trainer John Gosden has an excellent record with his runners at Wolverhampton, and City Of Ideas can further enhance it with victory in the 1m 4f handicap on today’s card at the Midlands venue (15:55).

Taghrooda gallop

The Newmarket handler boasts a 36 per cent strike rate with his runners at the track in the past 12 months, and in City Of Ideas has a lightly-raced colt who looks on a potentially handy mark.

City Of Ideas showed progressive form as a juvenile, opening his account at the third time of asking when scoring over 1m 1f at this venue back in November.

The three-year-old was allotted an opening handicap mark of 75 on the back of that victory, and ran well off it when third to Shabbah over 1m 2f at Bath.

Although no match for the easy winner, City Of Ideas stayed on nicely under tender handling to be beaten 6 3/4 lengths.

Shabbah has gone on to score twice since to be rated 86, and that is strong form which suggest City Of Idea is weighted to take all the beating off a reduced rating of 74.

Judicial Inquiry gets the verdict

In the 1m handicap that closes proceedings (18:00), Judicial Inquiry looks decent value to land the spoils for in-form trainer Ed Walker.

Race horse trainer ED WALKER.

The gelding opened his account over course and distance back in December when running on strongly to score by two lengths off a mark of 57.

Judicial Inquiry got put up 5lb for that victory and has failed to trouble the judge in three subsequent outings following a break.

However, the son of Lawman is now able to race off a reduced rating of 59 and drops back down into class 6 company having run in a class 5 at Haydock when last seen in action.

That makes Judicial Inquiry a big player in what looks a weak contest, and the return to the Tapeta surface is a big plus.

Wolverhampton selections

14.15: Born To Finish
14.50: Greyfriarschorista
15.20: Alyssa
15.55: City Of Ideas (NAP)
16.25: The Tichborne
16.55: Harbour Master
17.25: Gladys Cooper
18.00: Judicial Enquiry (NB)


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David Metcalf

A lifelong Manchester United supporter, David has over 25 years’ experience in the media industry having worked for regional and national newspapers. He is a huge horse racing, football and greyhound fan and has done interviews on various radio and TV stations, including talkSPORT and Sky Sports, whilst working as a PR front man for a betting firm. David has also written for most of the top Premier League football fan websites, and produced a Cheltenham Festival guide with former eight-times champion national hunt jockey Peter Scudamore, MBE, after helping him to set up a syndicate for his trainer son Michael.