Astaire To Dance Home In Duke Of York
With an excellent weather forecast York’s Dante meeting which starts tomorrow promises to provide three days of top class action although recent heavy rain will mean soft ground for the opening day,with conditions likely to improve for the Dante Stakes and Yorkshire Cup on Thursday and Friday respectively.
Potential Oaks fillies will attempt to enhance their Epsom prospects in Wednesday’s Musidora Stakes headed by the promising Cambridge who is only preceded by Taghrooda in the ante-post market for the Epsom Classic on Friday 6th June, but it is the Duke Of York Stakes at 3.15 which provides the big betting heat of the day and the 6f Group 2 contest can go to the Kevin Ryan-trained Astaire at the 7-1 available with Skybet, Betvictor and 888sport.
The son of Intense Focus ended his 2-year-old career with a hat-trick, culminating in an all-the-way victory in the Group 1 VisionAE Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket beating stablemate Hot Streak by half a length. In an effort to see if it would be worthwhile having a crack at the Qipco 2000 Guineas the colt’s seasonal reappearance took place in the 7f AON Greenham Stakes at Newbury but a combination of the extra furlong and the opposition (Kingman and Night Of Thunder) proved too much for the mount of Kieren Fallon who led until inside the final furlong before eventually coming home in 5th place.
Champion jockey Richard Hughes takes the mount on the Knavesmire and in what is likely to prove the colt’s optimum trip the only 3-year-old in the race is expected to make all from stall 2 with soft ground specialist Jack Dexter likely to provide the stiffest opposition.