Saturday 26th September, 3.10pm, Newmarket
There’s a superb day of action coming from Newmarket tomorrow and one of the feature races is the Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes. This is a Group One for two-year-olds held over a distance at six furlongs.
This race looks to be all about one horse and that is the quite excellent Shalaa for John Gosden and Frankie Dettori.
Shalaa has managed to win his last four races and was really impressive on the July course a couple of months ago.
He’s followed that up with wins at Glorious Goodwood and then over in France. Dettori has described him as one of the best two-year-olds he has sat on.
If we’re honest, it’s tough to see Shalaa beaten and that is why he is a 4/9 shot for a trainer who is also in excellent form.
Ajaya is then at 7/1 for William Haggas and Graham Gibbons.
He managed an excellent win at York last time out and was one and a quarter lengths ahead of Ribchester on that day, who has franked the form since.
He was also just a head behind Gutaifan before that, so is clearly a colt with plenty of talent. There could be more to come from this colt too.
Buratino was superb for Mark Johnston and William Buick in the Coventry Stakes at Ascot in June, but disappointed a little bit last time out and is at 10/1 here.
You just wonder whether this horse might want the ground a little quicker than it is here. However, he has to have a chance.
It’s then 12/1 about Venturous and 16/1 for Rouleau, who gets the services of Ryan Moore. Madrinho and Steady Pace are both then available at 33/1.
For us, it’s tough to see Shalaa beaten here, but we think Ajaya will go close and could be worth backing EW at 7/1.