Saturday 20 January 2018

Cotai can grab glory this time around

Cotai Glory suffered heartbreak at Doncaster last year but he can right that wrong on the opening day of this year’s St Leger meeting.

Charlie Hills’ runner was among the top rank as a juvenile last term, winning the Molecomb Stakes at Goodwood before lining up with fine claims in the Flying Childers at this track.

He appeared to be in control of that Group Two event, only to swerve badly with the post in sight, causing his saddle to slip and his jockey to be unshipped.

Connections tried to seek swift compensation in the Abbaye last autumn but he found older rivals too tough a test while he has suffered the usual three-year-old sprinter issues so far this term in finding his age slightly against him.

Cotai Glory’s initial third in a Listed heat at York in July was certainly a performance to note and while he was only fifth in the King George Stakes at Goodwood, he was only beaten just under three lengths by Muthmir.

Softer ground did not suit on his most recent outing in the Group One Nunthorpe but Hills maintains a high opinion of his colt and switching back to better conditions in the Listed j2o Spritz Scarbrough Stakes, Cotai Glory rates a solid contender.

All eyes will be on Tony McCoy in the Clipper Logistics Leger Legends Classified Stakes but Johnny Murtagh can scupper the 20-times champion jockey’s chance of a victorious return aboard Commissar.

He was a slightly unfortunate runner-up at Redcar in July when he was beaten three and a half lengths in a seller after jumping a piece of litter in the closing stages and will certainly have excellent assistance from the saddle here.

Akeed Champion can bring up his hat-trick in the Frank Whittle Partnership Handicap. He has taken some time to realise his potential but  shed his maiden tag at the sixth attempt at Redcar in July.

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