Classic Threads



Dewhurst 2004

13th October 2004, 1:34 PM
Looks a cracking renewal. The Johnston and Hills horses head the market and rightly so. Oratorio is a good solid improving horse, my worry would be he had a tough race last day after a lay off. This might come very quick, he would have to be as tough as his trainer says he is. If he is he should be staying on strongly at the end.

The one I like at a decent price is Iceman. He could simply have run into two very smart sprinting types last time. Granted the ground doesn't ease too much he would be a decent e/w bet.

Interesting to see Dettori is going for the Royal Lodge winner.
13th October 2004, 2:19 PM

Etlaala is the one for me here.Hills record in the race is quite good and I liked the horse actitude in both his victories.

Iceman is very interesting for the 2nd place.It was a mistake by Gosden to drop back him in distance in the Middle Pk.

Shamardal form is not as good as looked in August and stable not in the form of last season.

Dettori in Perfectperformance is a negative for Librettist and neither of them have a good chance.

Oratorio had a very hard race in france and does not look a 3yo for me, they must run him trying to win more but I prefer others.

I see the edition as a good one but not a top class edition.

13th October 2004, 3:03 PM

I've barely had a bet this year because I have avoided those races where I could happily see a number of horses with a realistic chance of winning (and I stick to Group/Listed races).

Just on those mentioned, I would consider Etlaala, Iceman, Shamardal and Oratorio all to have a realistic chance of winning. I would be slightly surprised (my eyebrows would go up just a little in a manner reminiscent of Roger Moore) if Perfectperformance won - (but that's because I have a thing about 2yo's who have proved they are good at a mile dropping back), but in saying that, it wouldn't be the biggest shock.

Librettist would not surprise me.
If there is some ease in the ground Montgomery's Arch would not be a surprise, but my initial feeling in the Lagardere was that he didn't quite want 7f yet (connections reckon the ground though).
Why is Henrik 33/1? 16/1 I can see, 10/1 underpriced. But shouldn't be 33/1. And not a huge surprise if he wins.

Home Affairs, I must confess I've never heard of. I can't be paying enough attention.

How do I get around this problem? I WANT A BET!!!!!!!!!!!

13th October 2004, 4:30 PM

Don't see why Oratorio would not train on. Most good Danehills do, with Spartacus, who wasn't really top class, the only G1 winner I can think of off hand who didn't. Oratorio seems to have a similar profile to ROG and Landseer, although obviously a better 2yo than Landseer.

Onto Saturday's race anyway. Champagne Stakes is an overrated race in my opinion and Iceman hardly advertised the form in the Middle Park, whatever about the distance so I'm going to rule them out in a tricky race.

Librettest's hype seems to be dampened by the fact he would appears to be worse than Perfectperformance, who doesn't impress me at all so I'll rule thwm out too.

That leaves it between Shamardal and Oratorio. Even if he does improve from Longchamp Oratorio is still pretty exposed so if Shamardal is as good as Steve thinks he is, or anywhere near it he should go close.


13th October 2004, 8:05 PM

I would go along with Hugh C-I cant split Oratario and Shamardal.Oratario won me a few quid in Paris and with a doubt about Shamardal being 100% and me not liking anything remotelyassociated with the Hills family its got to be Oratario at an each way price.

14th October 2004, 12:18 PM

Ground looks to be on the easy side now. Would be a worry for a few of these.

15th October 2004, 2:21 PM

Look guys at odds of 7/2 and 4/1 all your Christmas's have come at once here. Shamardal won't just win he'll crucify them. He is an absolute bolt on unmissable certainty. He is about twice as good as anything else in the field.

Can I be clearer? Get on. He is a mortal lock. He wins.

15th October 2004, 2:31 PM


That is about as bullish as anyone has been on this forum has been since the days when Swirly Chaser spouted all that bollocks about Keen Leader being better than Best Mate!

Well done!

Sadly though, I think Etlaala will win.

an capall
15th October 2004, 2:50 PM

Miller, the cheque for my children has cleared and I am on Sham. If he loses I am going to save up the air fare and come looking for you.

15th October 2004, 3:07 PM

How much did Gearoid pay for your daughter?

15th October 2004, 3:08 PM

I much prefer Etlaala rather than Shamardal.

15th October 2004, 3:43 PM

Iceman has good chances of reversing form with Etlaala and he and the O'Brien horse have best chances of being runner up.

I haven't a clue why Etlaala is favourite other than Barry Hills talking him up. Because he is favourite he is keeping the prices big for the others. This is a real opportunity for a value bet and normally I'd hunt around for it. This year we don't have too.

Not since Montjeu was second favourite to Beat All in the Irish Derby have I been so certain that a second favourite will beat the favourite. The soft ground is not a particular worry for Shamardal as he has been working well on it.

I have seen this horse on the High Moor at Middleham. He travels better than anything you have ever seen and then just quickens like greased lightning through a vacuum (which is fast).

If you're on An get on again. I've backed him at fours and will get as much on him as I can down to even money. That good? Yes!

15th October 2004, 3:56 PM

Talk about going out on a limb...

Very tough race IMO, for some reason i think it's a two horse race between the market leaders, i just can't have Iceman or Oratorio at this point.

I'll be backing Shamardal, and if it's anywhere close to 7/2, i'll be pleased.

15th October 2004, 3:59 PM


The form of his Goodwood run has not worked very well.
I think I read he had a proble after that.Do you know what happened exactly?
I liked him in the GG race but I remember the horse as not having a lot of scope.
The pedigree is not the one of a soft ground horse.
80 days without a run does not look ideal to run in a gr1 race in soft ground as a 2yo.

Most of the field is unproven in the ground.
The stable has had a winner today but is not having a great season.

about Etlaala
He had a nightmare trip in his last and still won it.
The record of his trainer in this race is good.
The pedigree suggest he is more likely to adapt to the ground than others.
And has been run just twice and has more scope than others here.

15th October 2004, 4:01 PM

Good man denisco. Get at least something on today. The price ought to dry up quicker than Newmarket Heath.

15th October 2004, 4:04 PM

It was an undisclosed fee. I'll be breathing off her straight away..

15th October 2004, 4:09 PM

It's true suny he missed a few days work following his last race at Goodwood, described as a slight setback. But his preparation for this has been uninterrupted and he is thriving. I'm not saying he won't be even better on better ground and I can see how your reasoning works.

But forget all of that. We are not dealing with a normal horse here. You would need Mill Reef in the field to give this one a race tomorrow.

15th October 2004, 4:11 PM

Steve, OK, you've convinced me.

an capall - it's OK, I know where he lives.

denisco - Sid James are on their own now at 4/1, to be taken I think.

15th October 2004, 4:13 PM

My work is done in that case... I'm off for a beer.

15th October 2004, 4:13 PM

Originally posted by BrianH@Oct 15 2004, 06:11 PM
Sid James are on their own now at 4/1, to be taken I think.
Come an' 'av a go if ya think ya 'ard enough!

15th October 2004, 4:20 PM

Already did (each-way, of course)

15th October 2004, 4:25 PM

Shamardal is 7/2 on the industry tissue, so I will be surprised if there isn't any 4/1 in the Pricewise table tomorrow.

15th October 2004, 4:33 PM

A bird in the hand...

15th October 2004, 5:01 PM

Just seen that Iceman is 8/1, absolutely massive.

Just looked over the etlaala form, i forgot he was beaten a half length conceding 5 pounds to etlaala, could anybody please tell me why he is 8/1 and etlaala is 11/4?

Got to be a cracking e/w bet.

Along with Shamardal for the win of course :)

15th October 2004, 5:08 PM

Agree that Iceman is overpriced,well worth an each way

15th October 2004, 8:05 PM

Shamardal to win from Iceman.

15th October 2004, 9:47 PM

Very bullish Steve-I will seriously reconsider my position.

15th October 2004, 9:47 PM

I too have back Shamardal on Steve's advice.

an capall
15th October 2004, 10:46 PM

I said I'd sold the children, not the daughter.

15th October 2004, 11:23 PM

I wonder what Gearoid has got by mistake then?

16th October 2004, 12:13 AM

Heavens knows but maybe that penicillin will sort it out

16th October 2004, 9:34 AM


Another Horse is on 107

16th October 2004, 12:02 PM

Those that have missed the 25/1 and 20/1 on Shamardal for the Guineas, be quick for the 12s at Corals... only 8/1 with Hills and the Tote.

16th October 2004, 1:01 PM

I don't believe that Shamardal will be suited by the going, and unimaginatively I'm rowing in with Etlaala.

Gareth Flynn
16th October 2004, 3:07 PM

Steve, I hope you had your house and more on. Thank you very much!

Flagship uberalles
16th October 2004, 3:10 PM

Was worried a bit at halfway, but won really impressively. Great stuff Steve!

16th October 2004, 3:11 PM

Congratulations for all that backed him ,especially Steve.
In this moment this one is your new Baracouda or Montjeu... :D

16th October 2004, 3:12 PM

"A prophet is not without honour, except in his own country, and among his own relatives, and in his own house." Mark vi : iv

16th October 2004, 3:14 PM

Good run but doesn't really strike me as the guineas winner. He had the rail and the ground didn't allow horses to quicken. I could see a different result to that race if one fast ground.

Swirly Chaser
16th October 2004, 3:18 PM

Originally posted by Relkeel@Oct 15 2004, 03:31 PM

That is about as bullish as anyone has been on this forum has been since the days when Swirly Chaser spouted all that bollocks about Keen Leader being better than Best Mate!

Well done!

Sadly though, I think Etlaala will win.
One major difference in that Steve was right. B)

16th October 2004, 3:19 PM

Great shout, Steve. Wish I'd read this thread :confused:

16th October 2004, 3:23 PM

Shamardal would of won even easier on better ground.And he can almost certainly quicken alot better than anything else in that race.
Shamardal also seems to go on any ground which is also a bonus.Very exciting racehorse.Let's hope that he makes to the Guineas fit and well.

Tout Seul
16th October 2004, 3:25 PM

Good for you , Miller!
Your complete faith in Shamardal persuaded to have a decent bet. Moreover havinging just lost out on £15,000 on Mr Ed and watching a biggish bet sink with the unfortunate Mister Monet I doubled the bet .

Who could now remember those tips early this summer.

Great judgement, well done!

16th October 2004, 3:30 PM

Front runners, especially those on the rail, won everything today, except the Champion Stakes, where Haafd came up the rail;. I had the forecast, so it's not sour grapes or anything, but like American Post in the trial (that famous I think others will do Shamardal in the future.

He strikes me as a typical MJ bully and other than Attraction, who eventually met her match, they tend not to win as much as others catch up.

Flagship uberalles
16th October 2004, 3:32 PM

No 3yo has ever caught Attraction to date - if you forgive her terrible run in France.

Shamardal really did the business. I wasn't going to back him, changed my mind at the last minute.

16th October 2004, 3:35 PM

Rubbish Trainer,never has prooduced a top class horse and this one will be winning a seller soon.

Yeah right :D

16th October 2004, 3:36 PM

Impressive stuff. Not the prettiest but pretty is what pretty does. Ballydoyle will be absolutely delighted with Oratorio.

Colin Phillips
16th October 2004, 4:40 PM

VERY well done Mr. MILLER, sir!


16th October 2004, 4:47 PM

What was going to be a large e/w bet on Oratario became split stakes on the first 2 at 5.7 &9.4.Thanks Steve -i cant remember the last time anyone changed my mind.

an capall
16th October 2004, 5:22 PM

He looked really useful. Pity about the trainer who I expect to ruin him over the winter.

eric c
16th October 2004, 6:01 PM

Thanks for the encouragement Steve---he would be my fav for Guineas---another Mark Johnston horse for the commentators to tell us will be hard to pass.

:angy: :angy: :angy:

16th October 2004, 6:43 PM

Miller you beauty.

16th October 2004, 8:07 PM

Guys, great that you were on. I just love this sort of market, you could only get this at somewhere like Newmarket or Ascot. However much money you wanted to put on Shamardal today the market just absorbed it. I had just shy of seven grand on at an average of fractionally below 4/1 and the price went out!

Topped up my Guineas bet too this morning adding to the 25/1 and 20/1 I took before his last race.

He’ll be even better on better ground and can do things that I have rarely seen in a 2-y-o. He is a very high class colt.

When you have seen the likes of Mill Reef in the flesh you know what standards to judge a 2-y-o to. This one meets them.

16th October 2004, 9:01 PM

After backing Cornus , Penkenna Princess and Mr Ed I was desperate .

I texted Songsheet " Hooray for Miller "

I thought Shamardal was tremendous . The change of gear to leave them for dead two out pretty dazzling . The link was surely Wilko - the others had beaten him , Shamardal murdered him . I thought he wasn't that impressive first time I saw the Vintage but watching it again I changed my mind . However it was indeed the faith of the Miller that upped my stake - cheers Steve .

I only regret that had I seen all of this thread before I went to Newmarket I would have had a lot more on !

I note he did a faster time than Firebreak

16th October 2004, 9:21 PM

I thought my £20 win was relatively large :)

16th October 2004, 9:21 PM

When you have seen the likes of Mill Reef in the flesh you know what standards to judge a 2-y-o to. This one meets them.

I thought we'd seen it last year with Three Valleys :shy: :shy:

16th October 2004, 9:27 PM

Me too :(

Dave G
16th October 2004, 9:33 PM

In the same boat as Maurice I'm afraid, nights has made me miss this thread completely!!
Outstanding stuff Steve, you will sleep easily and cosily through the winter months with the ante post vouchers.

16th October 2004, 9:35 PM

Let alone the £30,000 he won today

16th October 2004, 10:20 PM

Steve, any chance you could see your way clear..... :lol: :lol:

17th October 2004, 9:02 AM

Very good call, Steve, Shamardal looks the likely Guineas winner now. He did get the run of the race, but that's hardly his "fault"!

Etlaala spoilt his chances, first by starting slowly, and then pulling like a maniac for the first quarter mile. He'll need to learn to settle, but the trainer has got a job on his hands with this fellow. Maybe they'll have to let him stride along, but then he might not last out a mile, and having won with him over 7f they won't want to have to revert to sprinting.

17th October 2004, 9:44 AM

I was disappointed yesterday at the end of racing when i wnet to look at the board where they put the sectional timings that the timings for the Challenge and Dewhurst were not there to see whether there was a great deal of difference in how the race was run - it didn't look like it - so going 0.06 faster than Firebreak when carrying only 5lb less looks pretty stunning

17th October 2004, 10:04 AM

Beware the time comparison - remember Lindop...

17th October 2004, 10:08 AM

With misty eyes...

17th October 2004, 10:14 AM

OCC had a similar thing, albeit with a group three rather than a group two I think.

17th October 2004, 10:16 AM

I never quite understood this HW /Lindop thing - Lindop ran a time 4.4 seconds slower

17th October 2004, 10:20 AM

Don't dig it

17th October 2004, 10:28 AM


17th October 2004, 12:55 PM

Glad I’m not the only one Ardross. I had always assumed the Lindop thing was a bit of a joke. Lindop ran to his extent showing a time of 1m 41.18s (slow by 2.88 seconds) getting a rating of 85, while Hawk Wing (amazingly running well within himself) clocked up 1m 36.78s (fast by 1.52 seconds), virtually four-and-a-half seconds faster getting a comparable rating to Lindop's 85 of a conservative 134 (Maurice will tell you it was into the 140s).

I’ll leave the time-figure experts to convert that to lengths over the distance, but Hawk Wing was clearly value for a much bigger winning margin and his superiority over Lindop that day was so big it isn’t really worth talking about.

Also that being Lindop’s only run, there is no telling how good he might have become.

The fact that Shamardal (a 2-y-o!) has actually run slightly faster than a multiple Group winning 5-y-o tells you something about just how good he is.

17th October 2004, 1:19 PM

Of course virtually everyone has an idea (or should have) of how good Shamardal is now (although on better ground he will leave this form behind).

To underline it this is what Joe Mercer has said:

Mercer, who rode the likes of Brigadier Gerard during a long and distinguished career as a jockey, said: "He's very probably one of the best two-year-olds we have seen in a long time.

"The way he won a Dewhurst on just his third run suggested to me that he is very special."

It's frightening to think how good this one might become he'll improve a bundle for that run and strengthen into an awesome 3-y-o. It'll take a good colt to get within a stone of him for the early season classics.

17th October 2004, 1:32 PM

My first bet in three months. It will be thanks to you I'll be locked all week Steve :lol:

Gareth Flynn
17th October 2004, 1:59 PM

Steve - would you be willing to give an opinion on how far Shamardal might stay?

17th October 2004, 4:00 PM

The Lindop thing was a joke on Brian's part. I'm surprised people still take it seriously. On times alone, what I said at the time was that HW's time rating was something like 34lbs ahead of Lindop's. That was mischievously interpreted as an assertion that Lindop was 'only' 34lbs inferior to a horse I reckoned had just put up one of the greatest form performances of my 30-odd years' punting.

I won't have all the info till later in the week, but I will not be in the least surprised if Shamardal's weight-adjusted time rating for yesterday falls short of Three Valleys' in the Coventry last year...

17th October 2004, 4:02 PM

So he won't be winning a Leger then? :D

17th October 2004, 4:03 PM

Poor TV would have hacked up at Donny :lol:

17th October 2004, 4:04 PM

he would have loved the fast ground!

17th October 2004, 4:14 PM


17th October 2004, 4:33 PM

Hi Gareth,
I wouldn't expect Shamardal to get as far as AOB's Giant's Causeway winner today, for example. Shamardal is likely to prove best at around 8 furlongs (or possibly at around 9 furlongs, which is what you really want for a Guineas horse). Footstepsinthesand is likely to get at least this and perhaps a bit more.

17th October 2004, 4:38 PM

I would think the furtherest they would ask Shamardal to go would be 10 furlongs.

17th October 2004, 4:44 PM

...I'm sure that's right... if that.

Coolmore may ask their one to go a bit further though, considering they put Hawk Wing in the Derby, who had no realistic chance of getting it.

17th October 2004, 4:59 PM

Shamardal hailed after Dewhurst success

by David Carr

IMPRESSIVE Dewhurst Stakes winner Shamardal put up the best performance seen in the race for seven years and looks sure to be crowned the season’s champion two-year-old, according to Racing Post handicapper Simon Turner.

The unbeaten two-year-old was also slashed in price yesterday for the Vodafone Derby and is now clear second favourite for the Epsom Classic with Ladbrokes.

Shamardal tops the current juvenile ratings on a mark of 125, with only the Racing Post Trophy to come among the year’s top juvenile contests.

“It is the highest rating I have given a horse in my time," said Turner, who has been handicapping two-year-olds for the Post for three years.

“Whatever happens between now and the end of the season I am sure the Dewhurst will be the most solid piece of form. I would be amazed if Shamardal is not the season’s top two-year-old and doesn’t top the classifications.”

The Mark Johnston-trained colt earned his figure by making it three wins from threestarts with a two-and-a-half-length defeat of Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere winner Oratorio at Newmarket on Saturday.

“I have based his rating on the fourth home, Iceman, whose run at Doncaster was very solid form, and there was no reason to think he didn’t run his race,” said Turner.

“Oratorio was very close to his French form and Montgomery’s Arch has improved on his run in France, but he had run only three times beforehand and had looked a very exciting horse.

“The time of the Dewhurst stacks up very well in relation to Firebreak and Maids Causeway, who won on the same card.”

Only Xaar has run to a higher figure in the Dewhurst in the past decade and Turner added: “Most people see the Dewhurst as a key race, and it is right back to that this year.”

Shamardal, a best-priced 5-1 with Coral for the 2,000 Guineas but more generally a 3-1 chance, had his Derby odds cut to 16-1 (from 33) by Ladbrokes yesterday and now ranks second to 8-1 market leader Dubawi, with no other horsequoted shorter than 25-1.

Johnston was reluctant to discuss plans for the colt in 2005 on Sunday, saying: “I am not thinking beyond yesterday at the moment.”

The trainer has been a vocal critic of the entry system for the Derby in the past,and would need to supplement Shamardal, who was the subject of a high-profile ownership switch last week.

The colt’s pedigree offers conflicting pointers as to his stamina potential. From the first crop of Giant's Causeway, he is a half-brother toa seven-furlong winner out of a mare whose brother, Street Cry, won the Dubai World Cup and whose dam, Helen Street, took the Irish Oaks.

There are unlikely to be any more clues this season, with Johnston's wife Deirdre saying on Sunday: "We'll have to wrap him up in cotton wool now through the winter, and keep him as safe as we can for the Guineas."

"He's fine - he trotted up sound and well this morning. He did it so well yesterday and on ground I'm not sure was completely to his liking. But he's so good he handled it anyway."

Connections of displaced 2,000 Guineas favourite Etlaala are looking forward to a re-match at Newmarket next spring, provided the ground is not as testing as it was on Saturday.

The Champagne Stakes winner beat only one home in the Dewhurst, but trainer Barry Hills’s son and assistant Charlie said on Sunday: “He just didn’t handle the ground at all. He travelled well, if a little bit keen, but then he just floundered in the ground.

“We are still looking forward to next year with him - he had a valid excuse and he didn’t lose anything in defeat

Swirly Chaser
17th October 2004, 5:03 PM

I was thrilled to watch Shamardal win, only because Steve put his head on the chopping block and this board is a genuine death row for people who put their heads on the block in a confident manner.

Shamardal is all the rage now for the 2000 Guineas, but before anyone writes off everything else, may I refer you all to a post that was made by another member on here back in May -

The 2000 Guineas has to be the craziest race of all to try to predict.

The horses are like the reds in a game of snooker. We spend the 2YO season trying to guess which horses will be the balls and which one will go into the pocket when the pack is broken. We say that some won't reach that end of the table, some will reach the bottom cushion and bounce back up this end. Some won't be good enough to get on the table or they'll be broken or dusty. We'll argue until we're blue in the face over which one might go into the one nominated pocket

Then it all starts again when the balls come out of the box in the spring. Some of the balls look bigger, some look smaller, some aren't even in the box any more.

Then, when the ref finally puts the balls on the table, he can put the white in the middle or on the left or on the right, or he can put two whites on the table. The table can be wonky and a ball could roll along the cushion and go in the right pocket, whilst most of the other balls are whizzing around before they rest against the cushion that the other ball rolled down. The other balls are nowhere to be seen.

When it is all over, we then argue about whether the ball that went in this year was lucky or not, whether it was as good a shot as the break last year. Whether it was hit too hard or too softly. We blame the ref for putting the white in the wrong place, or for putting two or three whites down. We blame the wonky table. We blame a dusty ball.

Invariably, the balls end up in completely different places to where anyone could have predicted, or indeed did predict. It is easier, once the break has been made, to see which balls will go in which pockets, and really that's where the debate should start.

But it won't happen. We'll do it all again. Madness.

One of the most sensible posts ever made on this board.

Back to Steve, though. Well done. I am not sure I know a wiser judge of racing than you.

17th October 2004, 5:09 PM

The Derby is a bit of a pipe dream, certainly at this stage. I would not recommend anyone backing Shamardal for that.

17th October 2004, 5:10 PM

The Leger however .......

17th October 2004, 5:16 PM

Saints preserve us!

I seriously doubt they will adopt a Mister Baileys-plus route with this one.

17th October 2004, 5:45 PM

I can't see the logic behind suggesting that Shamardal won't be the same horse on fast ground - his first two races were on fast ground and he does not have a rounded action .

17th October 2004, 8:38 PM

timeform goes to 124

18th October 2004, 8:06 AM

Topspeed gives a huge 127.

If the horse trains on he should win the Guineas.

18th October 2004, 9:09 AM

I would stake a lot that he will train on... therefore everything being equal we, in all probability, know the name of the Guineas winner. A rating in the high 120s is already good enough to win a normal Guineas. If he gets to post and improves even a little bit he will be hard to get past.

Don't know who wrote the piece that Swirly mentions, but apart from being amusingly written, I don't really get the correlation between thoroughbreds and snooker balls. In fact I'd have to say that the situation is not actually anything like a game of snooker at all. If you wanted to push the analogy (which I don't) I'd say that Shamardal was aleady over the pocket with a clear line to the cue ball. It's going to take some sort of genius billiards shot to knock him out of the jaws of the pocket now.

Irish Stamp
18th October 2004, 9:14 AM

Think the relationship is that Shamardal has balls :rolleyes:

18th October 2004, 9:40 AM

:lol: Ah... It all becomes clear.

18th October 2004, 10:40 AM (

I think also the horse has scope after what we saw on saturday.
I also agree about the autumm 2yo form being the most solid way to find the winners of the guineas.
But I also remember Xaar,he won in better style the Dewhurst and was not able to win the 2000 Guineas next season .

It will be very interesting what is going to do with the horse,going to Godolphin?
Or he continues in Johnston hands?
Dubawi is also a top class prospect and at the moment in 8f I would side with Shamardal but the other one is also very good and could have even mroe scope.

18th October 2004, 11:10 AM

Well, I'm happy to take the 5/1 that Coral offers for the 2,000 Guineas.

18th October 2004, 12:00 PM

The difference is I never fancied Xaar for the Guineas. Shamardal is a different horse.

5/1 is value to my mind Brian.

I think if the Maktoums do assume ownership that Johnston will be allowed to keep him at least for the Guineas, as was the case with Lend a Hand.

18th October 2004, 12:11 PM
Last edited:
Dewhurst 2004

I can't see the logic behind suggesting that Shamardal won't be the same horse on fast ground - his first two races were on fast ground and he does not have a rounded action .

From an ante-post point of view it is a real bonus that there will be no ground worries. There have been shorter price favourites for either Guineas over the winter for whom soft ground would have been, at best, an unknown.

Irish Stamp
18th October 2004, 12:13 PM

Steve not sure if i'm correct but did Johnston keep LAH till the end of his 3yo season?
If they do buy him i hope he doesn't move to Godolphin etc. until he's at least 4 (if he isn't retired early)

18th October 2004, 12:44 PM

They don't really have to buy him - they own him already through Gainsborough Stud

Swirly Chaser
18th October 2004, 1:02 PM

Steve, your reply immediately after the above was originally posted was -

balls?... Have you been drinking by any chance?

The strange thing is that I agree with every word. :lol:

18th October 2004, 1:44 PM

Yes, but it is not clear exactly what has happened.

Both Ahmed and Abdulla Buhaleeba's equine interests have always been managed by Gainsborough Stud.

Now that these interests appear to have passed to the Maktoums (due it seems to the gambling activities of the Buhaleeba's), it will be interesting to see if they will continue running in Gainsborugh Stud colours, or one of the elder Maktoum brother's colours (Hamden or Maktoum Al Maktoum, who are said to have close connections with the two Buhaleeba brothers) or whether they will be transferred to Godolphin and run under those colours.

Heaven knows why the Buhaleeba's couldn't have smashed their way out of trouble by backing Shamardal. I could have told them. They would of course have ruined the price for us. And anyway I didn't think they were supposed to gamble.

18th October 2004, 1:51 PM

Originally posted by SteveM@Oct 18 2004, 01:00 PM
The difference is I never fancied Xaar for the Guineas. Shamardal is a different horse.

5/1 is value to my mind Brian.

I think if the Maktoums do assume ownership that Johnston will be allowed to keep him at least for the Guineas, as was the case with Lend a Hand.

I think Xaar was a better prospect than this one at the same stage of their carreers.

18th October 2004, 1:52 PM

...I don't. This is the best 2-y-o prospect I've seen in many a year, I'm tempted to say since Mill Reef, but he of course failed to win the Guineas.

18th October 2004, 1:58 PM

The Buhaleebas only leased the horses from Gainsborough, Steve. As you know gambling is against the teachings of Islam and it seems that Sheikh Maktoum Al Maktoum thought that the much-publicised gambling stories (which relate to a few months ago) made the brothers unsuitable lessees. This may be a bit harsh on Abdulla, as it is only Ahmed who was punting ferocioiusly at the Ritz.

18th October 2004, 2:03 PM

Originally posted by SteveM@Oct 18 2004, 02:52 PM
...I don't. This is the best 2-y-o prospect I've seen in many a year, I'm tempted to say since Mill Reef, but he of course failed to win the Guineas.
I dont think him as better prospect for the Guienas than was Xaar or Zafonic.
I also thought Celtic Swing was almost unbeatable after that awesome display in the RP Trophy.Or even Hawk Wing after broking the record of The Curragh.

18th October 2004, 2:03 PM

Punting At The Ritz. Didn't Peter Boyle sing that in Young Frankenstein?

18th October 2004, 2:15 PM

Pennekamp - bless him :D

18th October 2004, 3:28 PM

Better than Hawk Wing Steve! :eek: ;)

18th October 2004, 3:41 PM


18th October 2004, 3:44 PM

Of ccourse, Lindop never raced as a two-year-old...

18th October 2004, 5:49 PM


18th October 2004, 5:56 PM

:lol: :lol:

19th October 2004, 3:27 PM

Yes that’s right IS Johnston was allowed to keep Lend A Hand until the end of his Guineas season and was transferred to Godolphin for his 4-y-o+ career.

When I talk about Shamardal being one of the best 2-y-o prospects I have seen I mean just that.

Arazi was just about the most brilliant 2-y-o any of us have seen, but he was no prospect to develop as his knees were caput after the BC Juvenile (as Paul Cole declared at the time to the annoyance of his connections) and no one should have expected too much from such a small colt with damaged knees.

I never though Xaar was anything that special and he has dodgy conformation. I was adamant, as Aidan and probably one or two others may remember, that King Of Kings was certain to beat him in the Guineas. In fact King Of Kings was the last horse (apart from Hawk Wing who I backed for the Guineas straight after the National Stakes) that I backed so far ahead of the Guineas itself at odds of 20/1 and 10/1 (I also backed Stravinsky the Winter before).

Hawk Wing seemed to me a brilliant prospect (and of course should have won the Guineas), but Shamardal is no less of one. Mill Reef was of course the prototype 2-y-o that all 2-y-os should aspire too and he was a prospect and a half.

Hector Protector and Fasliyev were among other great 2-y-os.

However, Shamardal is one of the very best prospects for winning the Guineas that I have seen since the early Seventies, not least because he looks virtually certain to be aimed at it. If he does line up and is beaten it will take a Brigadier Gerard-Guineas performance to beat him (and I’m not sure he isn’t even up to that) and events like that just don’t turn up that often.

Shamardal would win nine out of ten Guineas and perhaps, just perhaps, one more than that.

22nd October 2004, 9:17 AM

I managed a look at the times. On the face of it, Shamardal's unadjusted time rating of 110 is exceptional, and he did beat a G1 winner into second.

However, Peter May urges caution over at Daylight's place and he is no bad judge.

The time might be misleading, which can often be the case on very soft (officially Soft, Heavy in places). The times weren't as slow as I expected but apparently there was a moderate tail wind.

Since I haven't been studying the 2yos so far I can't say any more, but despite Peter's doubts, I reckon the Dewhurst form stands up to close inspection in terms of this season's crop.

23rd October 2004, 10:51 AM

I urge abandon rather than caution about this horse. He is even better than we saw in the Dewhurst and will pulverise any 2-y-o seen out so far in the Guineas if improving only slightly.

I'm not criticising this guy who urges caution, but if ever there was one not to urge it about it's this.

There has rarely been such a wide gulf among 2-y-os between the best and the next best at the end of a season (and I'm not even talking ratings here, just obvious superiority and what I have seen him do). The others are extremely unlikely to be able to show the required improvement to match him in any way by the time of the early season classics.

This horse is the real deal, he has no chinks in his armour. The right type for the Guineas and the winner if he gets to post, which I have no doubt he will.

23rd October 2004, 10:55 AM

I imagine you quite like this horse, Steve :lol:

23rd October 2004, 10:56 AM

Steve while I admire your confidence in the horse, and I will state I expected him to win the Dewhurst, he did only beat Oratario, a horse you didn't get too excited about after his Group1 win, by 2 1/2 lenghts. Oratario pulled muscles in that race, hard to know if it effected him or not. I would also point out the weakness of Oratario in the betting on the day, Ballydoyle were not going there thinking they had the second coming in the hands.

I would also point out how much closer Montgomery's Arch got to the O'Brien horse in this race. Beaten two lenghts in France and then got to within a head in Newmarket. He clearly appreciated the ease, Oratario didn't.

Do not get me wrong, have the utmost of respect for Shamardal and he deserves to be favourite, but lets get hold of ourselves here!!

23rd October 2004, 10:58 AM

Ballydoyle were not going there thinking they had the second coming in the hands.

A bit early for stud duties, isn't it?

23rd October 2004, 11:00 AM


Not really Mo... just the best of a bad bunch. :rolleyes:

23rd October 2004, 11:01 AM

That might come back to bite you Steve in the spring!! I certainly wouldn't think Oratario will be their number one horse at Newmarket. Himself and Russian Blue have done a very good job for them this season though.

23rd October 2004, 11:13 AM

I thought Oratorio or Iceman had the best chance of finishing second to Shamardal Aidan. I honestly hope that Oratorio isn't the best one Ballydoyle have. On better ground Shamardal could have beaten him half the distance of the track.

The RP has given him a high rating of 125 and a time figure of 127 against Oratorio's 119 for both.

What I'm saying is that this is the tip of the Iceberg for Shamardal he is disproportionately better than any of the others in relative terms than he has yet shown.

26th March 2005, 6:59 PM

Just thought I would bring this thread back up regarding my comments about Oratario and Russian Blue:

Steve (referring to Oratario):

just the best of a bad bunch


That might come back to bite you Steve in the spring!! I certainly wouldn't think Oratario will be their number one horse at Newmarket. Himself and Russian Blue have done a very good job for them this season though

What I have told you and (more importantly) the market is telling us strongly that Oratario will struggle to be Ballydoyle's second string let alone first string if he turns up at all in Newmarket.

27th March 2005, 11:57 AM

I think it is important not to judge three year olds based solely on their two year old form until they have run a least once at three.

There are so many precocious juvenile types that start to get passed by now at this time of the year by the late starters.

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