Silvestre De Sousa Blog | 23rd September 2017

The weather in this country is so strange. It’s been raining all week up at Ayr, meaning their prestigious three-day Gold Cup meeting has had to be abandoned due to waterlogging.

However, Newbury are racing on about the fastest ground they have raced on all summer and they are only about 400 miles apart. It’s a very strange situation.

Anyway, I’m riding at Newbury on Saturday where I have plenty of nice rides to look forward to…


Casa Comigo – Newbury 13:15

The two-year-old novice stakes has split into two divisions and I ride Casa Comigo for John Best in the opener. He’s an unraced son of Cape Cross who I don’t know too much about, but he must be showing his trainer something at home to warrant being thrown in a race like this.

The opposition look red-hot with Gronkowski, the mount of Ryan Moore, looking the obvious one. He cost 300,000 guineas and holds entries in races like the Dewhurst.


Brother Ralph – Newbury 13:45

I ride Brother Ralph for Brian Meehan in the second division and he is another one yet to see a racecourse. Again, it’s hard to know what you are up against but the opposition looks very threatening.

Sir Michael Stoute’s Baritone, a son of Camelot, holds some good entries and may be tough to beat. John Gosden’s well-bred Emaraaty was fourth on his debut at Sandown a few weeks ago and is another huge threat.


Staxton – Newbury 14:50

The big two-year-old race of the day is the Mill Reef Stakes, where the obvious one to beat is Invincible Army. He’s very consistent and gave me a nice feel when I was fourth in the July Stakes on him.

I ride Staxton who makes the trip down south for Tim Easterby. He ran a bit better than his finishing position of fifth in the Gimcrack suggests and he has plenty of experience under his belt. If he can step forward from that, he may surprise a few at a decent price.


Baydar – Newbury 15:25

A whopping field of 20 line-up for the Dubai Duty Free Handicap, where I ride last year’s winner Baydar on his first start for Ian Williams. He has shown nothing in six runs since that win last year and, as a result, is just 1lb higher in the weights.

Hopefully the change of scenery will spark a revival of form. Looking at the opposition and my eyes are drawn to Banksea who won here earlier in the season and may now be suited by this step up in trip.


Cotai Glory – Newbury 16:00

One of my best chances of a winner on the day is Cotai Glory who, like Baydar, is trying to follow-up in the same race as last year. This looks a really competitive sprint, but we know Cotai Glory goes well at the track and he has some solid form in the book.

The ground was terrible in Ireland last time and he will be much better on this surface. There are plenty of dangers, but if the ground remains quick I’d fear Priceless and Muthmir the most.


Croquembouche – Newbury 16:35

I ride the eight-year-old Croquembouche in the penultimate race and he is another one who needs to bounce back from a below par effort last time. Previously he had won at Pontefract, so went up 2lbs as a result.

There looks to be plenty of progressive sorts in this and he may just have his work cut out here against the likes of Weekender.


Esprit De Corps – Newbury 17:10

My final ride of the day is Esprit De Corps for Roger Charlton. He won his maiden nicely back in April and has mixed it in decent company since. He was a good second at Ascot in July and may not have fully seen out the mile last time.

The return to seven furlongs should help, and he wears cheek pieces for the first time which may aid him too. The race looks wide-open but I’m hoping he can go well.