The racing spotlight is firmly on the Knavesmire next week as York hosts the internationally acclaimed Yorkshire Ebor Festival, culminating on Saturday with the UK’s richest flat race handicap, The Sky Bet Ebor Handicap.
There’s of plenty Group 1 action throughout the whole meeting kicking off with The Juddmonte International for the opening day on Wednesday.
We’ll guide you through some of the best bets and look at several decent each way chances for the big one.
THE JUDDMONTE INTERNATIONAL, WEDNESDAY 21ST AUGUST
He may have been edged out by the enigmatic Enable in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot but Michael Stoute’s ever versatile Crystal Ocean is set to firmly bounce back in York’s most valuable race of the season, The Juddmonte International Stakes on Wednesday.
Stoute has reported his 5 year old to be in good shape although a jockey is yet to be confirmed with Frankie Dettori almost certain to ride King Of Comedy. James Doyle looks set to fill in. Crystal Ocean is now considered the top horse in the world according to the Longines World's Best Racehorse rankings.
Nap of the week for me, he should take all the beating although it’s a while since Crystal Ocean actually ran at York, his last run there being in 2017.
KING OF COMEDY
The John Gosden three year old comes into the reckoning after a splendid Group One debut at Royal Ascot where he narrowly missed out in The St James Palace Stakes, narrowly beaten by Circus Maximus. He also beat Too Darn Hot into third, who went on to win The Sussex Stakes before retiring. Therefore, the form has held up very well and King Of Comedy has to be highly respected in this step up to 1 mile 2 furlongs.
THE DARLEY YORKSHIRE OAKS, THURSDAY 22ND AUGUST
This looks to be the Enable show as the John Gosden super filly is almost certain to go for this in favour of the Juddmonte. With 7 runners declared, it’s not a betting opportunity although a forecast with Enable and the Epsom Oaks winner Anapurna looks a tempting proposition.
THE COOLMORE NUNTHORPE, FRIDAY 23RD AUGUST
Ten Sovereigns and Battash share favouritism in the sprinters battle. Battash clearly has the experience of the shortest distance having notched up 4 wins at 5 furlongs in the last year. He is also a devastatingly fast horse and could outdo them all with his pace as Ten Sovereigns seem to find his optimum trip over longer distances.
Aiden O'Brien's Fairyland looks a live each way proposition after an encouraging third at Newmarket recently over same trip.
THE SKY BET EBOR HANDICAP
This viciously competitive handicap is a tough one to call with many in with a shout as would be expected. We’ve selected three who stand out on value for good each way propositions.
Clearly one of the classiest horses in the field. Notable performances have included a short head defeat at the hands of Cracksman in The Coronation Cup at Epsom last year and most recently where he finished a very respectable 9 lengths 4th behind Enable in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes at Ascot. He stayed on impressively in that race and should appreciate the step up to 1 mile 6 furlongs. Interesting contender.
This Ed Dunlop trained 6 year old has proven form over course and distance after having run over the shorter distances, including a three length second to Crystal Ocean last year at Ascot. Solid each way at 20/1 with Bet Victor and Coral.
This Peter Chapple Hyam unexposed 4 year old gave an eye-catching performance last time in a Kempton all weather handicap and may come into the place scenario with some improvement. 25/1 with Betfair, Paddy Power and Betfred.
THE JUDDMONTE INTERNATIONAL, WEDNESDAY 21ST AUGUST: CRYSTAL OCEAN WIN (11/8 Bet Victor)
THE DARLEY YORKSHIRE OAKS, THURSDAY 22ND AUGUST: ENABLE to beat ANAPURNA STRAIGHT FORCAST
THE SKY BET EBOR HANDICAP, SATURDAY 24TH AUGUST: SALOUEN e/w (20/1, Bet Victor)
Please note all odds are correct at the time of publishing (12:00 18th August 2019) and are subject to change.