York & Goodwood Tips for 26th August 2023

Result: £-1.52 Results for York & Goodwood Tips for 26th August 2023

The excellent Ebor Festival has already provided several memorable moments this year, and the fourth and final day dominates the ITV coverage on Saturday. Goodwood rounds out the armchair entertainment with two cracking contests, creating a seven-race salvo on another excellent afternoon of sport.

The Group 2 City Of York Stakes tops the bill in terms of quality at York, but the biggest betting heat is the stamina-sapping Ebor Handicap. Down in Sussex, Goodwood hosts one of its biggest races away from the Glorious meeting as a talented field assembles for the Group 2 Celebration Mile. Here we run through the main contenders in each of the seven races and pick out our best betting options in this week’s Saturday Racing Tips.

1:50 Sky Bet And Symphony Group Strensall Stakes

Group 3, 1m1f

El Drama

The Sir Michael Stoute-trained Nostrum is the one to beat on ratings in the opener, being two pounds clear of the field and in receipt of the seven-pound three-year-old allowance. Very impressive on his seasonal return at Newmarket, he then disappointed when turned over as the odds-on favourite in a Group 3 at Goodwood. The soft ground was put forward as an excuse that day, making the unsettled forecast a concern for those considering supporting the son of Kingman at around the 11/8 mark.

Ralph Beckett’s Jimi Hendrix (11/2) is interesting, having landed a couple of competitive handicaps over a mile on good to firm and soft and run respectably in a Group 2 at Ascot last time out. However, his two efforts at beyond a mile have yielded two defeats by a combined total of 20 lengths. Rank outsider Chichester (33/1) is possibly overpriced as a Listed class course winner, but with only two places to play for, we will side with Karl Burke’s El Drama (3/1). Below par on good to firm ground in the spring, he bounced back to something like his best when going down narrowly to Al Aasy in a Group 3 last time out, and it was only back in March that he lost by a similar margin in a Group 1 out in Meydan. A winner at up to 1m2½f, he may hold a stamina edge here, with the ground coming in his favour.

2:05 William Hill Prestige Fillies’ Stakes

Group 3, 7f

Pretty Crystal

The juveniles are up first in the opening event from Goodwood. This event has thrown up a number of quality performers over the years, including Billesdon Brook, who went on to land the 1,000 Guineas. We have a number of highly promising sorts on show again this year, with six of the 10-runner field arriving on the back of a win. Included amongst that number are Hard To Resist (14/1), who took a big step forward from her debut effort when scoring at Newmarket and can go well in the colours of the Queen, and Darnation (8/1), who won by a small matter of 10 lengths at Thirsk.

Of the early entrants, the filly to have impressed us most is the Ollie Sangster-trained Shuwari. A perfect two from two to date, the form of her win in the Star Stakes has been franked, with the runner-up Fallen Angel since winning the Sweet Solera Stakes in dominant style. Already a winner on soft and good to firm, the ground was unlikely to pose a problem, and she could have landed a hat trick but was withdrawn on Friday. Richard Fahey’s Pretty Crystal is another for the shortlist, having finished fifth in the Albany Stakes and third in another six-furlong Group 3 race at Ascot. Being by Dubawi, this step up in trip may suit and she’s our pick at 4/1.

2:25 Sky Bet Melrose Handicap

Class 2, 1m6f

The Goat EW

William Haggas has won two of the past four editions of this event and is responsible for the top two in the market this year. Lordship (5/1) has the assistance of Tom Marquand in the saddle and arrives at York seeking a four-timer, with the two most recent of those wins coming over this trip. He’s up nine pounds for that latest one-length success but is improving and likely won’t be far away. Stablemate Alhambra (7/1) is on a winning streak of two and showed abundant stamina when ploughing through the Sandown mud last time out. He’s up six pounds, but three-pound claimer Adam Farragher takes over in the saddle to offset half of that rise.

Denmark (8/1) is an intriguing entry for Aidan O’Brien and looked in need of a step up in trip on his comeback outing in the Ballysax Stakes. It would be no surprise were he up to the task for his powerful yard, but the best bet in the race for us is an each-way punt on The Goat. This son of Cracksman has progressed in each of his three starts this season and posted a huge career best when hacking up by 12 lengths in a hot 1m4f handicap at Goodwood. The handicapper has taken a dim view of that in raising him by 12 pounds, but the manner in which he hit the line that day suggested this step up in trip may see him in an even better light. At a double-figure price, he looks good value to at least hit the frame.

2:40 William Hill Celebration Mile Stakes

Group 2, 1m

Galeron EW

The John and Thady Gosden-trained Epictetus (3/1) heads the market here following his solid win in Group 3 company last time out. That effort gives him a good chance, but we are concerned that his best form has come on soft ground, and he may not quite have his conditions here.

Aldaary (7/2) and Charyn (7/2) both bring solid Group form to the table, the latter having spent much of the season chasing Paddington home, whilst Random Harvest (8/1) is interesting stepping out of fillies-only company. However, the one who looks overpriced to our eyes is the Charles Hills-trained Galeron (16/1). Only just over two lengths behind Epictetus last time out, he had previously finished three-and-a-half lengths behind Paddington, when a slightly unlucky in running fifth in the Irish 2,000 Guineas. That form alone gives him a decent chance of hitting the frame, and he may find more in the first-time blinkers.

3:00 Sky Bet City Of York Stakes

Group 2, 7f


Having successfully defended his Lennox Stakes crown at Goodwood, Ralph Beckett’s Kinross (7/4) now bids to make it back-to-back victories in this seven-furlong event. Going in the hands of Frankie Dettori, he’s undoubtedly towards the top of the tree over this distance and seems sure to be involved in the finish. However, he is just a little short for our liking and only had a neck to spare over the reopposing Isaac Shelby (7/1) at Goodwood.

Isaac Shelby makes some appeal, as does the William Haggas mare Sacred, who is five from seven over this trip, but the one for us is Mutasaabeq at 15/2. Ryan Moore takes the ride for Charles Hills on this son of Invincible Spirit, and the best of his form gives him every chance. Slamming Native Trail in his comeback at Newmarket, he then ran with great credit when going down by just three lengths in the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes. His effort last time out at Ascot was disappointing, but he has never been at his best at the Berkshire track. Four from five over seven furlongs and already a dual winner in this grade, he makes plenty of appeal at the prices.

3:35 Sky Bet Ebor Handicap

Class 2, 1m6f

Get Shirty EW

A field of 21 go to post in the feature contest of the day in what looks like a typically competitive affair. If there is one horse who may prove ahead of his handicap mark, it is most likely Sweet William (7/2) from the yard of John and Thady Gosden. Successful with Trawlerman 12 months ago, the Gosdens have another likely sort in this son of Sea The Stars, who heads into the race seeking a four-timer. A four-pound penalty leaves him well in on ratings, but stall three may not prove ideal, with eight of the past 10 winners emerging from stall 12 or above.

The unexposed Real Dream (8/1) looks a huge danger for the Sir Michael Stoute operation, having hacked up on his first attempt at this distance last time out. The best of the runners from the National Hunt yards would look to be the Willie Mullins raider, Absurde, who chased home handicap blot Vauban in the Copper Horse Handicap at Royal Ascot. With most firms offering six places, it’s an each-way punt for us here, and the one to get the vote is Get Shirty (22/1). David O’Meara is always a man to fear in major handicaps, and whilst Get Shirty hasn’t shown much so far this season, he is expected to be primed and ready following a 42-day break. A winner at up to Listed level in the past, he went down by three-and-a-half lengths when fifth in this last year, despite enduring something of a nightmare passage, and is fully nine pounds lower this time around.

4:10 Sky Bet Constantine Handicap

Class 2, 6f

Albasheer EW

We have more big field handicapping action to round off the action. David O’Meara has another good chance in this one with the admirable old boy Summerghand. Twice a winner over course and distance, he came with his usual late rattle to go down by just a head at Ripon last week and arrives in tip-top form. On the downside, he has been handed a five-pound rise for that defeat.

The hat-trick-seeking Aberama Gold (8/1) is also a dual course and distance winner at the peak of his powers but has now risen 17 pounds since the start of the season, and the handicapper must surely catch up eventually. Orazio (9/1) would be of strong interest on his early season form, but it is the Archie Watson-trained Albasheer (18/1) who gets the vote. High class in his juvenile days, he has never quite delivered on that potential but has shown enough this season to suggest he may be up to winning off a mark of 95. Beaten by only three-and-a-half lengths in the Wokingham despite blowing the start, he has since been beaten by just over five lengths in bottomless conditions in warm events at the Curragh and Goodwood. Now three pounds lower than his Wokingham effort, and with the ground looking more suitable, he is fancied to at least run on into a place.