188BET Silvestre De Sousa Blog | 12th July 2017
Silvestre de Sousa Blog – 12th July 2017
As I live in Newmarket, this week’s July Meeting is one of the highlights of the season, but sadly because of the fixture congestion, I’m only likely to be riding ‘at home’ on the first day.
Crazy having so many big meetings on the same day
I know it has been said so many times before, but the fixture list around this weekend really does need to be looked at. There are so many quiet weekends around that it just seems crazy running the July Cup (Newmarket), John Smith’s Cup (York) and the Summer Mile (Ascot) on the same afternoon.
The same has to be said for Friday where Newmarket, York and Ascot clash again. I understand that it gives all jockeys a chance on the big stage, but it just seems a little bit strange.
Next week needs more action
Take next weekend when there is only really the Hackwood Stakes on at Newbury. Surely one of the big race meetings scheduled above would be better housed on a quieter Saturday? When you go to a firework display, they stagger the fireworks for a reason and don’t let them all off at the same time!
From my own personal selfish point of view, it’s a little frustrating because my best chances on Friday and Saturday look to be at Ascot, so that’s where I’m heading.
In the process, I’m missing out on some decent rides at Newmarket on horses I have struck up good relationships with. Anyway, enough of my ranting and onto my three chances on the opening day of the July meeting…
Sofia’s Rock – 13:50 Newmarket
A really good renewal of the Bahrain Trophy where I ride Sofia’s Rock for Mark Johnson. He’s already won twice this season and is stepping out of handicap company for the first time.
You can put a line through his Royal Ascot run as he was badly interfered with at a crucial stage and he will prefer this smaller field.
Having said that, he was struggling to hold his position at the time and this will require another big step up.
There may only be nine runners but you can make a case out for plenty with the obvious one being Atty Persse who was impressive at Ascot where he finished a good winner ahead of my mount. We may be 10lbs better off, but we have a fair bit of ground to make up.
Invincible Army – 14:25 Newmarket
Another cracking race with all eyes on Coventry Stakes winner Rajasinghe who will be very hard to beat despite a 3lb penalty.
I ride Invincible Army for James Tate and having watched him win at Newmarket last time, I’m really excited about riding him.
He was unlucky not to win a good-looking maiden at Goodwood on his debut, but certainly made no mistakes last time. This is obviously a big step up, but I know his trainer thinks a lot of him and he‘s an exciting prospect.
Cartographer – 15:00 Newmarket
It’s difficult to be confident in a wide-open Newmarket handicap, but I have another really good chance aboard Cartographer for Martyn Meade.
I rode her to win a handicap here at the backend of last month and she looks a filly on the upgrade. She is 9lbs higher here, but won with plenty in hand so must have a serious chance of following up.
There are plenty of others in here I know well having ridden them to victory already this season. Danielsflyer is better than he showed at York last time, while Victory Angel has no Caravaggio to fear this afternoon and wears a visor for the first time.
I’ve no ride in the Princess Of Wales’s Stakes, so that gives me the perfect opportunity to fly off to Epsom and ride in five races there.
If I had the choice of one to be on here, it would have to be Frontiersman in first time cheekpieces. He ran a hell of a race to be second at Epsom and, despite being quirky, is very talented. He wouldn’t want any more significant rain, which would play into the hands of his stablemate Hawkbill.
Epsom – five rides in the evening
My agent has done well to get me five nice rides at Epsom on Thursday with four of those in races with six or fewer runners. All five look to have chances, although I doubt any of them will go off favourite.
The three I ride for Mark Johnston, Celestation (18:05), Sorority (18:40) and Hamster Jam (19:15) look really solid and will be there to pick up the pieces if the more fancied ones in the market above them under perform.