There’s a nice mix of familiar old favourites and young pretenders for this year’s Doncaster Mile Stakes, a Listed Race that has a long tradition and is historically run on the same day as the first big handicap of the flat-racing season, the Lincoln Handicap.
The race is open to 4-year-olds or older, and it is 4-year-olds who have the best record in the last decade with 4 winners, whilst three 5-year-olds, one 6-year-old and two 7-year-olds have been victorious.
7 runners are set to go to post for this year’s renewal – so here’s out analysis and tip!
Custom Cut 5/1
David O’Meara’s admirably tough 7-year-old could only manage third place in the 2014 renewal when the ground was soft, and would prefer the ground to ride good to soft or good if he’s to be seen at his best. He was certainly at his best on last year’s seasonal debut when winning a Group 2 Race at Sandown under a penalty, but must concede some potentially useful rivals 7lb here. Trainer and jockey combination won the 2012 renewal.
Gave 3lb and a 3-length beating to Bossy Guest last season at Newmarket, but was out of form for much of 2015. He has also run poorly on both his starts at Doncaster, and his best form has come on good-to-firm ground.
The 2014 Dewhurst winner is the only horse in this line-up with real claims to be a group-1 performer, and got to within ¾-length of the might Solow at Ascot last season, and was fourth in the Irish 2,000 Guineas. That form would be good enough to win this, and he has no penalty to carry after not winning last season. His trainer has been in good form at home and in Meydan, and Belardo loves cut in the ground.
Bossy Guest 25/1
Looked a group performer when placed in the 2,000 Guineas and at Royal Ascot last season, but form tailed-off after. This could be his time of year though, and trainer in form.
Calling Out 25/1
Officially has 17lb to find with Belardo, and the form of his Lingfield conditions race win wouldn’t be good enough to win this if the principals run to form. Fit from Meydan though.
Master Carpenter 16/1
Best form has been on good ground and in big-fields, such as when winning the John Smith’s Handicap at York. He’s also proved best at 10-furlongs so far, so may well try and make this a test of stamina.
Very promising 3-year-old over 7-furlongs, but this is a tough ask after 21 months off, though trainer John Gosden does well at Doncaster
Everything looks right for Belardo providing he has come to himself earlier than he did last season. If not, Custom Cut may be able to defy a penalty.