Harvey Mayson's horse racing tips for Friday night's racing at Dundalk Stadium.
5.15 BetVictor Claiming Race
Official ratings suggest that Yuften can get favourite backers off to a good start here under Dean Curran. The eight-year-old has previously been with William Haggas, Johnny Murtagh, Roger Charlton and John Butler. He now resides with John Feane and has won both starts in this grade for his new connections. Yuften was rated as high as 116 earlier in his career and still possesses plenty of ability.
Sharp Defence and Super Julius look the two biggest dangers. The former has five lengths to make up on their recent meeting which also came after a change of stables. Super Julius makes his debut for the Donohoe stable after switching from the yard of Eve Johnson Houghton last month.
5.45 BetVictor Maiden
The favourite here is Aidan O’Brien’s U S S Michigan, a grey son of War Front out of a mare by Unbridled’s Song. He was just touched off on his racecourse debut at the Curragh last June over six furlongs. The winner was placed in a Group 3 next time and U S S Michigan does hold an entry in the Irish 2000 Guineas.
Royal Court represents Joseph O’Brien and brings the best recent form to the table. He finished in the frame here twice in February, most recently behind Cityman. Edward Lynam’s Lewandowski looks the pick of the older horses but looks held on the Cityman form where he finished third.
Tip: U S S MICHIGAN
6.15 Follow @betvictorracing on Twitter Handicap
A competitive heat for punters to solve here with a maximum field over seven furlongs. Burning Lake is likely to be popular after an eye-catching second to Calling Time here in January. The three-year-old was formerly trained in England by Charles Hills, winning a Newcastle handicap from Klipperty Klopp in October. He is now 8lbs higher but Donagh O’Connor reduces that with his 5lbs claim.
Joseph O’Brien sets punters a poser by saddling four runners, headed by top weights Vhagar and Isotope. Vhagar has finished in the frame in all four previous visits to Dundalk. Donnacha O’Brien rides Isotope who showed his first signs of ability when nursed into fourth at long odds here last month. He was a 50-1 chance that day and has been given a rating of 70 for his handicap debut. Ifyouhaveaminute also showed some potential when staying on into fourth behind Ice Bullet here over six furlongs. The step up to seven furlongs looks certain to suit the daughter of Casamento.
Tip: BURNING LAKE
6.45 BetVictor Fillies Race
This race is confined to four-year-olds and upwards over seven furlongs. I Can Fly will be many people’s idea of the banker bet of the night for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore. She has always been held in high regard at Ballydoyle and was a regular performer in Group 1 races last season.
She was well beaten in the 1000 Guineas and failed to stay in the Oaks but won the Group 2 Boomerang Stakes in September. She ran the race of her life when beaten a neck by top miler Roaring Lion in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes in October. Surrounding has almost a stone to find on official ratings, a Listed winner here in October.
Tip: I CAN FLY
7.15 BetVictor Horse Racing Multiples Cash Out Handicap
Plenty with chances here including three last-time-out winners in Hasselnott, Dandys Gold and War Hero. Hasselnott was beaten by Yuften in a Claimer here before winning impressively on his first start for Anthony McCann. He has gone up 8lbs while Dandys Gold is up 6lbs for a win over six furlongs here in January.
War Hero was all out to hold Waitaki over course and distance in December and is only 2lbs higher. The gelding has an excellent record at Dundalk and is nicely drawn in stall six. Sevenleft drops back in distance after a couple of decent efforts over a mile while Port Lions has his first run since being gelded.
7.45 BetVictor Patton Stakes
The feature race of the evening is the Listed Patton Stakes over a mile. Aidan O’Brien has a strong hand here with Van Beethoven (Donnacha O’Brien), Albuquerque (Seamie Heffernan) and Western Australia (Ryan Moore). It is interesting that Moore prefers the latter who is set to receive 5lbs from Beethoven.
The son of Australia holds entries in the Irish Guineas as well as the English and Irish Derby. Although only successful in one of his six races as a juvenile, he ended the season by finishing third in the Group 1 Futurity Trophy at Doncaster.
Van Beethoven won 2 of his 8 races as a two-year-old including the Group 2 Railway Stakes at the Curragh. He was well beaten at Newmarket and Goodwood but was not disgraced when fourth to Too Darn Hot in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster in September. O’Brien also runs the Gowran maiden winner Albuquerque, a son of Galileo out of a Stravinsky mare. He holds the same Classic entries as Western Australia and is certain to improve on whatever he does here. Ryan Moore’s mount is given the vote for our Dundalk racing tips.
Tip: WESTERN AUSTRALIA
8.15 BetVictor Casino Handicap
McGuigan bids to defy a 6lbs rise in the handicap for his victory over an extended mile and a quarter in January. The seven-year-old was well beaten on his only two previous attempts beyond that distance but that was back in 2015.
Course and distance winner Drakensberg has gone up a stone after slamming Magic Sea by six lengths. He was a decent performer in Germany in 2017 and still receives weight from all bar one of his rivals. What A Start remains a maiden after five races under rules. He was a fair second here in January but didn’t get the run of the race last time behind May Peace Prevail.
8.45 BetVictor (Q.R.) Handicap
The meeting closes with a trappy little handicap for amateur riders over two miles. Gordon Elliott’s Markhan has been running consistently and has been in the frame in each of his last seven races. He last ran at Wolverhampton at the end of January when second to Moon Of Baroda.
His market rival is All’s Quiet, a comfortable winner over course and distance in January. He has gone up 6lbs but that is nullified by the claim of his rider.
Tip: ALL’S QUIET