This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

2019 Craven Meeting tips - Five horses to follow at Newmarket

Jonathan Vine 12 Apr 2019
A wonderful view of the stands during last year's Craven Meeting.

Our expert takes a look through all of the races during the three-day Craven Meeting and highlights five horses that punters should watch closely at Newmarket next week.

Midweek racegoers are in for a treat next Tuesday, as Newmarket opens it’s gates for the 2019 Craven Meeting. A capacity crowd will be in attendance during all three days of the Festival and a range of lucrative prizes will be handed out – with the namesake race of the week, the Craven Stakes, one of six Group Three and Listed races to be staged during the week.

Billesdon Brook, Masar and Kew Gardens all strutted their stuff during last year’s Craven meeting, before going on to claim Classic glory in the 1000 Guineas, the Derby and the St Leger respectively. A number of high-quality horses have been entered into the headline races at this year’s meeting and our expert has picked out five of the biggest names for punters to side with at Newmarket.


Aidan O’Brien has often sent some of his smartest horses over to Newmarket this week and WESTERN AUSTRALIA could be hard to beat in the Feilden Stakes. This son of a Derby winner finished fourth in two high-profile Grouped races last season, including a decent effort behind Persian King in the Autumn Stakes here on the Rowley Mile.

Western Australia faded from the front that day and I was expecting a similar occurrence as Michael Hussey’s mount set the pace for Magna Grecia in the Vertem Futurity Trophy. To see the three-year-old hang on gamely to finish a one-length third, however, was quite a surprise and Western Australia returns to Newmarket on the back of a decent second behind a Dundalk specialist on his reappearance.

Main Edition (right) winning the Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot.



Mark Johnston’s filly won the Albany at Royal Ascot and successfully carried a penalty to victory in the Sweet Solera Stakes on the July Course. Main Edition was then comfortably beaten on her Group One debut in the Moyglare Stud Stakes, but shaped with promise when third to Just Wonderful in the Shadwell Rockfel and did her best work during the first half of last season. There’s more improvement to come from this hardy filly.


Richard Hannon’s charge performed admirably carrying big weights in handicaps during the first half of last season, winning over course-and-distance in May when giving 20 pounds to the runner-up. Yafta was then able to transfer that form into Grouped races, beating Projection in the Hackwood Stakes and he could be open to further progression during his four-year-old campaign.


Charlie Appleby will be hopeful Zakouski can follow in the footsteps of stablemate Masar and William Buick’s mount has already been tipped by some to mount a winning challenge in next month’s 2000 Guineas. Godolphin look a good bet to retain the Craven trophy, but it’s Saeed Bin Suroor’s ROYAL MARINE who catches my eye.

Oisin Murphy was in the saddle as Royal Marine lowered the colours of Turgenev in a maiden at Doncaster, before going on to land Group One glory in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere. Christophe Soumillon’s mount may have disappointment out in Meydan, but that victory at Longchamp is already working out very well and he has the edge in experience over the well-regarded favourite.


Elarqam has a reputation to rebuild after a hugely underwhelming Classic campaign. Godolphin will also play a strong hand here, with First Nation and Vintager heading to Newmarket after unsuccessful runs out in Meydan, but the one I want to side with is Sir Michael Stoute’s MUSTASHRY.

We all know how good Stoute is at helping older horses improve and Mustashry enjoyed a hugely profitable 2018. The six-year-old claimed back-to-back Grade Two wins in the Park Stakes and the Shadwell Joel, before finishing just four lengths behind Expert Eye in the blanket finish to the Breeders’ Cup Mile. This will be a tough task, but Mustashry is a previous course winner and has solid form over this sort of trip.


Share this with your friends

To:
From:
Your comments:

2019 Craven Meeting tips - Five horses to follow at Newmarket

Our expert takes a look through all of the races during the three-day Craven Meeting and highlights five horses that punters should watch closely at Newmarket next week.

Read more »

You have unread messages

    You have unread messages