Bonfire can burn off rivals for Dante glory
By Stephen, bettingexpert.com | Published
Google+: Stephen Harris
Andrew Balding's highly regarded and progressive Bonfire is fancied to land the £150,000 Betfred Dante Stakes at York this afternoon.
The Manduro colt has always been the apple of his up-and-coming trainer's eye, and he built on the immense promise of his Salisbury maiden win with a creditable third at Saint Cloud when last seen out in October. He missed the Chester May meeting last week because of the deep ground, and should relish the drying conditons on the Knavesmire under the excellent Jimmy Fortune.
Main danger for this prestigious Group 2 prize comes from the unbeaten Mandaean. He was impressive in winning two juvenile contests in his native France last season and has reportedly been pleasing his new connections at home during the winter. A positive move in the market later on would confirm that he is high in the pecking order at home for the powerful Mahmood Al Zarooni stable.
Roger Varian's Ektihaam has won three of his four career starts and will lack nothing in race-fitness after gamely landing a fair conditions race at Newbury 27 days ago. He was well ridden off a fast pace that day, benefitting from the principals pulling hard and failing to get home, and this flat, speed course may be against him kept to the 1m2f trip.
Ernest Hemingway represents the powerful Ballydoyle juggernaut and is hard to assess after winning his maiden on the all-weather at Dundalk by ten lengths in April. He is evidently well regarded, but it is a huge leap upto group class and only a strong move in the betting would encourage any support.
Fencing made a creditable return when sixth behind Camelot in the 2000 Guineas and appears sure to relish the extra two furlongs here. He was a good third in the Group 1 Racing Post Trophy last season and is open to further progression after just four career starts to date.
The twice raced maiden Dream Tune appears outclassed despite showing ability when runner-up at Newbury last time, while Ptolemaic is fully exposed and safely held in this company.
In summary, Bonfire is on many good judges ten to follow lists after a promising season as a 2-y-o and is taken to defeat some promising rivals. He is worthy of a decent win investment at around 5/2 this morning, expected to outpace the opposition in the closing stages.
Stephen's Thursday Nap Barbarella Blue 3.10 Salisbury
Keep track of Stephen's Daily Nap's on our BettingExpert Daily Naps page.
Follow Stephen on Twitter :@stephenh61
You must be logged in to post a comment! Sign up + or log in in the top right corner.
Stephen, Like you, I see the last 150yds coming down to a tussle between Bonfire and Mandaen and I found it decide which mast to pin my colours to. But I liked the depth of the french form and after a closer look, I came down on the side of Mandaean who should thrive under the Al Zarooni team. Should be a fascinating renewal - good luck.