Osaila to have Frankie jumping for joy in Newmarket’s Nell Gwyn

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Not very often outside of the likes of the Cheltenham and Aintree Festivals will you see such a high quality day of racing on a Wednesday afternoon.

Some of the biggest Classic contenders look to showcase their Guineas and Derby aspirations at Newmarket, as the Craven Meeting kicks off at HQ.

While over the jumps, Prestbury Park is set to host the Grade 2 Teenage Cancer Trust Silver Trophy Chase on a very competitive card.

We’ve taken a look at a trio of the races to hopefully pick out a winner or two.

European Free Handicap (15:30 Newmarket)

Currently 5/1 second favourite for the 2000 Guineas, Faydhan will take some beating if living up to his billing.

He is probably justifiably long odds-on after treating subsequent Group 3 winner Dutch Masterpiece with distain on his only start.

However, those looking for a play could be in for some nice each-way prices.

Jungle Cat was a consistent sort last year, placing in four Pattern races, and will probably run his race.

However, the progeny of Ifraaj have in the past done very well at two, but failed to step up at three, including the likes of Wooton Bassett, Hot Streak and Rizeena.

Instead, a chance can be taken on outsider Tupi.

Richard Hannon’s horse struggled when stepped up to 1m in the latter parts of last season, but had put up some good performances at 7f previously.

A 2l second behind Derby fancy Highland Reel at Goodwood stands out as solid form, and at the bottom of the weights, can bounce back to fill the places behind Faydhan.

Nell Gwyn Stakes (16:05 Newmarket)

Favourite Beautiful Romance was an impressive winner of her maiden, but that form doesn’t look particularly strong with some of those in behind beaten again since.

The same can be said for course and distance victor Lady Correspondent.

Instead, preference is for the proven class act in the field Osaila.

The Al Shaqab-owned filly put in a strong performance to finish third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita last time out, following an eye-catching victory over course an distance in a valuable sales race.

Prior to that she took the Group 3 Juddmonte Stakes at Ascot, with other subsequent Listed and Group winners in behind, in July.

With four time winner of this race, Frankie Dettori, on board, she warrants plenty of respect.

Silver Trophy Chase (15:50 Cheltenham)

The ultra-game mare Pepite Rose found only Rebel Rebellion too strong at Newbury three weeks, and is sure to put in another bold run, up another furlong.

However, Venetia Williams’ eight-year-old has gone up another 5lbs in the weights ahead of what could be a stronger race.

She hasn’t run at Cheltenham before, but a horse that proves he loves it there is Caid Du Berlais.

You have to forgive a stinker at the Festival, and the December Gold Cup when he was pulled up after a major blunder, but there seems to be something about the place that sparks him into life.

He’s only 6lb higher than when winning the Paddy Power Gold Cup here in November, and has subsequently ran well over course and distance.

Prior to that he has been placed at two Festivals at the venue over hurdles, and if Paul Nicholls’ has him back firing on all cylinders can rekindle his love affair with the course.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.