Jim Crowley: He’s just physically improved and really strengthened up
Jockey and Coral ambassador Jim Crowley discusses the chances of his five rides at Newbury on Saturday.
This is an incredibly hot race and it’s obviously a big step up for him, but he’s been really impressive in his last two runs on the all-weather and I think he’s a really nice horse. He’s been pleasing us with his work at home, so even though he’d have plenty to find on the figures with a mark of 90, I think he’s a lot better than that.
I think he could make up into a Commonwealth Cup horse, but realistically he’ll have to run a big race here if we are going to aim him that high. I’m really looking forward to riding him, though, and I suppose we’ll find out exactly how good he is.
He disappointed us on his last start at Doncaster in the November handicap, but he’s won when fresh before, and with John and Thady’s horses in such great form, it wouldn’t surprise me if he runs a good race.
He will need to improve on what he’s shown so far, pitched into Group company for the first time, but although Yibir sets a fairly good standard, it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if Israr finds the necessary improvement to get involved.
Mutasaabeq put in a massive performance last time when winning the Group Two race at Newmarket, so he’s well worth another go at the top level here. He’s now 2-2 in the blinkers, so they’ve definitely helped him, but I also think he’s just physically improved and really strengthened up, so he could have even more to come this season.
— Shadwell Stud (@ShadwellStud) May 16, 2023
He doesn’t have to lead, but he seems to enjoy it, so that’s probably how we’ll ride him if things pan out that way, and I’m really looking forward to the race.
It looks a really good renewal and you’d have to respect horses like Modern Games and Light Infantry, who both bring very good form to the table, but on ratings my lad would be right there with them. Laurel is very lightly raced, so you’d have to respect her too, but Mutasaabeq is more than capable of winning this race if he puts his best foot forward.
He just didn’t run his race in the Lincoln last time, but I wouldn’t be in a rush to write him off. He wouldn’t mind a bit of cut in the ground, but it was very testing at Doncaster that day and I’d just say he didn’t handle it at all. This is another competitive race, but I still think a mark of 96 potentially underestimates him and I can see him running well at a nice price.
I’ve not ridden him before, so I don’t know a huge amount about him, but hopefully he can return to his best form. He won impressively at Wetherby last year, but was disappointing after that, so hopefully the wind operation helps him get back on track. It’s another very competitive race though, and he has been off the track for almost a year, so we’ll see how he gets on.