The Chester May Meeting usually signals the start of the summer but the weather hasn’t played ball this year. It is an absolutely miserable day here and the ground is easing all the time. By the second or third race it will likely be properly soft. Dave Stevos has been studying the form and hopefully he has found a few that should go well on the ground. Check out his Chester Day 1 tips and preview below…
Chester Day 1 Tips: 1.50 Lily Agnes Stakes (Class 2)
First up are the 2yos over the flying 5f and a low draw is usually crucial at Chester. A few horses have already pulled out due to the ground and only eight now remain. With such a small field the draw may not be as pivotal as usual and an ability to handle easy conditions will be more important. Show Me Show Me is well thought of by connections and being by Showcasing he should handle the ground. Due to the non runners he will now start from stall 6 which is not ideal. Odds of 5/2 look pretty skinny.
Chasanda made a very good impression when winning on her debut against the boys on good ground at Windsor. Sent off at 25/1, she belied those odds to win well from the front. The style of her victory suggests this track will suit her. By Footstepsinthesand, she should handle an ease and David Evans has a good record in this race. He won it two years ago and had the runner up last season. Chasanda gets a nice bit of weight from the boys and if she gets away well she could give each way backers a good run for their money at odds of 28/1.
CHESTER DAY 1 TIPS: CHASANDA E/W @ 28/1
Chester Day 1 Tips: 2.25 – Cheshire Oaks (Listed)
A decent sized field of 12 fillies will go to post for this 11.5f Listed contest. Wonder filly Enable won this a couple of seasons ago, but there is unlikely to be anything of her calibre in the race this time around. Aidan O’Brien runs Secret Thoughts here but being by War Front, she is unlikely to appreciate the rain that has fallen.
One horse that will relish the easy ground is Grace And Danger for Andrew Balding and Oisin Murphy. This daughter of Teofilo made a very nice debut at the backend of last season, winning on soft at Nottingham over 8.5f. There are mixed messages in her pedigree regarding the suitability of this trip. However, Teofilo is a stamina influence and the chances are she will stay. At odds of 10/1 she is worth chancing each way on ground that suits.
CHESTER RACING TIP: GRACE AND DANGER E/W @ 10/1
Chester Racing Tips: 3.00 – Boodles Diamond Handicap (Class 2)
The draw is key in this 5f race and Top Breeze is in the box seat in stall 1. However, he has yet to encounter soft ground and he seemed to relish good to firm at Newmarket last time. One horse that looks drawn to attack and that should be okay on soft ground is Yolo Again. This Toronado filly will be ridden by Silvestre de Sousa and there are few jockeys in better form at the moment.
She has a 3rd on soft to her name, over 5f when trained in Ireland, and she likes to get on with things from the front. Yolo Again has 2L to find with Leodis Dream on their meeting at Thirsk, but Roger Fell’s filly is now 8lb better off with that gelding. She won’t lack for race fitness, she has a grand draw in stall 3 and at odds of 16/1 she looks well worth chancing each way.
CHESTER TIPS: YOLO AGAIN E/W @ 16/1 NB
Chester Racing Tips: 3.35– Chester Vase (Group 3)
The feature race of the day is the Group 3 Chester Vase. Disappointingly for each way backers only 7 horses will go to post and two of them are trained by Aidan O’Brien. Norway looks the number one on jockey bookings but on soft ground he has questions to answer. Sir Dragonet was very impressive when winning on debut at Tipperary (12f sft) and he looks a decent prospect.
This represents a big step up in class for the son of Camelot but it would be no surprise if he was up to the task. As one would expect, this colt is impeccably bred and his pedigree contains a lovely mix of speed and stamina on the dam side. King Ottokar is probably the one to beat on form, but this fella looks to have bags of potential and at 8/1 he is the each way pick.