Cambridgeshire Handicap Preview – Saturday 29th September
Last updated: September 27, 2018 by Leon Marshal
The £160,000 Cambridgeshire Handicap is the big betting race at Newmarket on Saturday. It is the first leg of the Autumn Double, completed by the Cesarewitch Stakes next month. Bookmakers have certainly come out on top in this race in recent times.
Spanish Don stunned punters at odds of 100-1 in 2004 and there have also been winners at 50-1, 40-1 and 25-1. Educate was the only winning favourite in the past ten seasons when ridden to victory by Johnny Murtagh in 2013.
Kynren ante-post favourite at Newmarket
The consistent Kynren has been ante-post favourite for the race, trained by David Barron and ridden by William Buick. He has been running well all season with his only disappointing effort being in the Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot. The son of Clodovil was third in the John Smith’s Cup at York and then finished a close second to Poet’s Society at York.
William Haggas is yet to win the Cambridgeshire but has two live contenders this year. Alfarris looked to be travelling like a winner at York last month but had to settle for second behind Pivoine. The winner has been put up 8lbs for that success and Alfarris has a chance to reverse the form at this shorter trip.
Haggas also saddles Her Majesty The Queen’s Seniority, a four-year-old gelding by Dubawi. He swept through late to win the valuable Golden Mile at Goodwood under Ryan Moore. He then finished a respectable sixth behind Lord Glitters in a Group 3 at York. That form has been boosted by runner-up Mustashry since.
Danceteria is an interesting runner from the David Menuisier stable. He won four consecutive races this summer, moving up the handicap from 77 to a rating of 104. He finished fifth off that mark at the Curragh but was given a lot to do by Fran Berry and was finishing best of all.
Gosden bids for fourth Cambridgeshire victory
John Gosden has won the race three times, most recently with Tazeez in 2008. He has three runners on Saturday with Wissahickon (Frankie Dettori), Tricorn (James Doyle) and Stylehunter (Robert Havlin). Wissahickon won well at York in June but was beaten under a 7lbs penalty next time. He bounced back to win on the all-weather at Chelmsford.
Tricorn may be the pick of the duo, a four-year-old gelding by Helmet. Although only tenth in the Hunt Cup, he was beaten less than six lengths. He was fitted with a hood next time at Chelmsford and ran on strongly behind Corrosive. Stylehunter was sixth in the Britannia Stakes at Royal Ascot before winning a five-runner contest at Goodwood.
UAE Prince almost overcame an absence of 253 days when second to Grey Britain at Newmarket. He was very unlucky not to win at Goodwood last year and seems to run his best races when fresh. Stablemate Sharja Bridge came through strongly to challenge at York last time but faded in the closing stages behind Poet’s Society and Kynren. He is 3lbs better off with the runner-up and will have the assistance of Silvestre de Sousa. Afaak has been beaten in several top handicaps, notably when behind Alfarris at Goodwood in July. He was a heavily backed favourite at Doncaster last time out but faded into third behind Euginio.
Kenya was highly tried by Aidan O’Brien this summer. He was last in the Dee Stakes at Chester and again in the French Derby at Chantilly. The three-year-old Galileo colt then dropped to handicap company and beat a large field decisively at the Curragh. He was back up to Group 2 last time when second to stable companion I Can Fly at Leopardstown. Top weight Circus Couture ran well in heavy ground at Haydock Park last time and was third in the Hunt Cup. He cannot be ruled out with a very compressed weights range this year.
Very Talented was placed in the Cambridgeshire in 2016 but has only raced once since. That was a victory at Chelmsford where he overcame a 726-day absence. He is racing off a 4lbs higher mark this year but Rossa Ryan’s 3lbs claim reduces that to 1lb.
Kenya @12-1 bet365
UAE Prince @16-1
Very Talented @14-1
Each-way ¼ odds, 1,2,3,4,5
The Cambridgeshire Handicap is due off at 3.40 at Newmarket on Saturday 29th September and will be televised live on ITV4.