Two fallers, one fatal, make for difficult visibility on the opening day in York

<span>Racegoers who watch Dancing In Paris will win the Stuey Weston & Friends Getting Out Handicap in York.</span><span>Photo: Mike Egerton/PA</span>” src=”–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MDtoPTU3Ng–/ 70cb34fa980″ data-src= “–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MDtoPTU3Ng–/ 34fa980″/></div>
<p><figcaption class=Racegoers who watch Dancing In Paris will win the Stuey Weston & Friends Getting Out Handicap in York.Photo: Mike Egerton/PA

A fall in both the second and third races, one of which resulted in a fatal injury, made for difficult viewing for racegoers and armchair fans alike as York – the Ascot of the North – opened its 2024 season on Wednesday, with the result of the Group Three Musidora Stakes, in which the odds-on favourite, Friendly Soul, finished well behind Secret Satire, a shot of 22-1, was also not something to celebrate for many punters.

However, you need look no further back than last year’s Musidora to find an example of a surprise winner – Soul Sister – following suit sixteen days later in the Oaks, and Andrew Balding’s filly will now look to give her trainer a second success in the Epsom Classic on May 31, 21 years after the first with Casual Look in 2003.

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It has to be said that Soul Sister had a lot more to offer 12 months ago in view of Classic success, including pedigree – from Frankel, while Secret Satire is from the sprinter, Advertise – an emphatic final kick from the pace that took her four lengths clear on the line and a glowing approval from her jockey, Frankie Dettori.

Secret Satire, on the other hand, performed hard in the early stages, due to the slow, early pace, and as she pulled away at the line again, her endurance for the step up dropped to a mile. -half will remain a big question mark for many gamblers.

Yet the point of classical trials is to give lenders the chance to weigh it all up for themselves, and Anna-Lisa Balding, who represented her husband, suggested afterwards that “Oisin [Murphy] was actually very confident when we stood him up and he came back and was very complimentary.

Balding added: “It’s been 21 years since we won the Oaks and it’s just lovely to have runners in those big races. It’s that time of year when all geese are swans and all the morning smiles can turn the wrong way, but that smile will really put a smile on Andrew’s face.”

Like Soul Sister last year, Secret Satire is likely to face a hot favorite from the Aidan O’Brien stable when she posts at Epsom as Ylang Ylang, a fourth fourth in the 1,000 Guineas, remains clear in the market around 5-2, with her stablemate Rubies Are Red, next on the list at 8-1. Secret Satire was still backed at 25-1 on Wednesday night, although 16-1 or lower was the more common offering.

There was a tough start to the afternoon as Hispanic, making his debut for the Mick Appleby stable, cut heels in the early stages and dropped Rossa Ryan, suffering a broken leg when he fell. There was then a fall at another point in the straight in the next race, the Group Two Duke Of York Stakes, in which Tiber Flow and Tom Marquand crashed after running out of space with just over a furlong to run .

The stewards investigated both incidents and found that Hispanic’s fall was the result of accidental interference. The investigation into the Tiber Flow fall was postponed until Thursday because William Buick, who rode the winner Mill Stream, had already left the course and could not be interviewed.

Caviar can reach the heights

Ignoring the Covid-affected 2020 season when the Dante Stakes at York was held in July, two of the last eight winners follow in the Derby 16 days later and five of the last nine have won at least one Group 1 race . later in the season, but it may also be significant that only one of the last ten had not already had at least one run in three.

That should be a concern for anyone looking to back favorites Ancient Wisdom in Thursday’s extra-time as Charlie Appleby’s colt, an impressive winner of the Group One Futurity at Doncaster at the end of October, has not seen a racecourse since.

Al Musmak, the second favourite, has been absent since finishing second at the Royal Lodge at Newmarket in September, but Andrew Balding’s Caviar heights (3.45)their main rival according to the betting, arrives after an emphatic four-length success at the Guineas meeting.

Caviar Heights probably looked much better at three during a quiet junior campaign, posting a remarkably strong winning time at Newmarket earlier this month and with his fitness advantage he looks the prize winner for Thursday’s race around 9.2.

York 2.15 As deep and competitive as any sprint handicap this season Bergerac, a two-course winner, is back below his last winning point and could beat the odds of around 33-1.

Salisbury 2.30am Lightly raced Duke of Verona There is still room for progress for a yard that is in good form.

York 2.45 hours Julie Camacho’s symbol of light, a 20-1 shot, has yet to win since being bought from Charlie Appleby’s yard in the fall of 2022, but is very feasible if headgear and wind surgery since his last start take effect.

York 3.15 Free wind won this first time last season with something to spare and a repeat of that level of form again should suffice.


1.50 Medieval gold

2.20 Imaginarium

2.50 French Highlands

3.20 Wind strength

3.50 Cuban cigar

4.20 What a Johnny

4.50 Walbuck’s

5.25 Takt De Touques


2.00 Beau Jardine

2.30 Duke of Verona

3.00 Pont Neuf

3.30 Ms. Stormy Night

4.00 Master Builder

4.32 Oxford comma

5.02 Spartan warrior


2.15 Bergerac (nap)

2.45 Symbol of light

3.15 Free wind

3.45 Caviar heights (nb)

4.15 Break my heart

4.45 Andesite

5.20 per counter


5.10 Break my soul

5.40 Island run

6.10 Millies mite

6.40 Mermaid cave

7.10 He could be the only one

7.40 Kalkas

8.10 Cheering


5.52 Sun dancer girl

6.22 Young endless

6.52 Dark thunderstorm

7.22 Pannonica

7.52 Ring the bell

8.22 Diamond dreamer

York 4.15 The admirable Big Evs, winner of last season’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint, returns to action but appears to fall short on first rise and Unbreak My Heart, anyone with a run under their belt doesn’t care much about ratings.

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