LONDON – Peter Bowen’s Mumbles Head can continue his fantastic run of form by claiming the John Smith’s Summer Cup at Uttoxeter.
With a total-prize fund of £20,000 up for grabs, this 5200m contest has quite rightly attracted a decent field of staying chasers for the time of year.
Mumbles Head tops the weights having shot up 36 points in the handicap in a little over two months – but he might not be done winning just yet.
The 11-year-old showed some seriously smart form as a novice chaser a few seasons ago, competing in high-class contests against the likes of Weapon’s Amnesty, Diamond Harry and Weird Al.
While his rating has risen quite considerably of late, he has in fact only just come back to the horse he once was following a spell in the doldrums.
His current winning run started off with a bloodless success at Market Rasen and he has since collected two valuable prizes north of the border at Perth, most recently winning the Perth Gold Cup without coming off the bridle. The runner-up that day, Cottage Oak, reopposes at Uttoxeter on better terms. But considering the ease with which Mumbles Head put that Irish raider in his place, he is fancied to confirm the form.
Blue Hills is in similarly rude health and is worth an interest in the FSB Fuel Card Handicap Chase.
The 11-year-old spent almost three years on the sidelines before joining David Bridgwater earlier this year and incredibly seems better than ever.
Seven starts have yielded four victories and two seconds, with his most recent triumph at Newton Abbot suggesting there are more races in him yet.
He gets into this particular contest off a nice weight and looks bound to give Tommy Phelan another great spin.
Mick Channon’s Salisbury winner Cruck Realta has outstanding claims as she returns to the Wiltshire track for the KJ Pike & Sons Ltd Auction Stakes.
The daughter of rapidly emerging sire Sixties Icon was placed at Goodwood and Doncaster on her first two trips to the racecourse, so her triumph here was widely anticipated.
What was a little more surprising, however, was her fantastic effort at Royal Ascot last week, where she battled on bravely to place second in the Chesham Stakes.
Early evidence suggests she handles all types of ground and she must have every chance of getting back in the winner’s enclosure.
Pulverize will surely get off the mark at the fourth attempt in division one of the Goldring Security Services Maiden Stakes.
Sir Michael Stoute’s American-bred colt finished second in two good maidens as a juvenile and was far from disgraced when third on his three-year-old debut at Lingfield in May.
He ought to have derived plenty of improvement from that first run of the year and with Stoute’s string now in decent form, Pulverize is primed to get his head in front.
Columella is bred to be a very smart two-year-old and could not have been more impressive on her first start at Warwick.
William Haggas’ filly is a half-sister to two Pattern-race winners in Memory and Remember Alexander and looks the one to be with in Windsor’s British Stallion Studs / Betfred Mobile EBF Fillies’ Conditions Stakes.
Group 1 action is on offer in Ireland and Dermot Weld’s Sapphire is taken to beat Oaks heroine Was in the Barclays Bank Ireland Pretty Polly Stakes.
Weld made no secret of the fact he expected this Medicean filly to develop into a classy four-year-old and after a bloodless Group 3 win at Cork on her return, Sapphire is given a shot at the highest level. – Press Association.