WELCOME to our Eyecatchers column. Every week Alan Thomson pinpoints horses primed to strike in the next few weeks, if not days. Remember, you can add Alan's weekly updates to your ATR Tracker.
LA RIOJA ONE TO TOAST WHEN RAIN ARRIVES
David Loughnane is enjoying a fine season and Earth Drummer ran with credit, finishing tenth to Portage, beaten just over four lengths.
The six-year-old had looked a little unlucky when fifth in the Victoria Cup at Ascot early last month and remains quite lightly raced.
Things got a bit congested on the far side in the Hunt Cup and Earth Drummer was cramped for room at one stage before running on steadily.
Sir Michael Stoute provided The Queen with a royal winner on Saturday with Dartmouth in the Hardwicke Stakes and Diploma must have given Her Majesty another thrill when staying on into fifth spot behind Persuasive in this highly competitive fillies’ handicap.
The assessor had slapped 10lb on Diploma’s rating for winning at York’s Dante fixture and she should continue to improve as this was only her sixth career start.
Hugo Palmer’s filly didn’t look in the ideal frame of mind and may have been feeling the after-effects of a tough old race in the Oaks.
Architecture was fretful in the preliminaries and her eighth place behind well-backed Even Song isn’t a true reflection of her natural ability.
Raised 9lb for his comeback success at Newmarket in the spring, Folkswood didn’t really fire in eighth spot behind narrow winner Defrocked.
Charlie Appleby’s colt found himself a bit out of his ground when switched to the far side from a centrefield draw and he is one to keep on your side.
As a confirmed mudlover, she would have preferred the ground even softer but Henry Candy’s filly emerged with plenty of credit by running fourth to Quiet Reflection.
La Rioja raced handily and was perfectly positioned on the flank to throw down her challenge. However, she just lacked the necessary acceleration to trouble the principals.
Connections will be hoping for a very wet autumn.
Ran a crackerjack of a race, going down by a head to Outback Traveller. Brando raced in a small cluster of runners down the middle and looked a shade isolated when the others fell away. He stuck on bravely under pressure and will no doubt seek to give Kevin Ryan his fourth Ayr Gold Cup scalp in the past 10 years. Brando looks tailor-made for the race.
Alan Thomson's Eyecatchers column is sponsored by SIS - visit www.sis.tv for more information on a range of services for bookmaker and punter.