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The Mandarin’s Saturday Selections for 16th September 2023

The Mandarin’s Doncaster St Leger Racecard for Saturday 16th September

Betfred Champagne Stakes (Group 2) 1.50
It will be fascinating to see if Richard Hannon’s exciting Blue Point colt is as good on Town Moor’s soft ground, as he bids to bring up the hat-trick. His first two wins, at Newbury and Ascot, have been on a better surface, as his Sire did prefer firmer going. However, Rosallion won with authority in the Listed Pat Eddery Stakes last time out, form that has been franked by the runner-up scoring last weekend in good style. A warm order favourite for sure, and this should tee him up for a crack at the Dewhurst next month, with Charlie Hills Iberian the main danger

Betfred Portland (Heritage Handicap) 2.25
Call Me Ginger
Jim Goldie’s sprinter has hit peak form just at the right time to get the vote for this Premier Handicap. He was second in this race last year, though promoted to winner after a stewards’ inquiry. He lines up here on a hat-trick after wins at Chester and Ascot, but there’s more cut in the ground this time, and this will be his third race in just three weeks. If that doesn’t catch up with him, he’s in the mix once again

Betfred Park Stakes (Group 2) 3.00
Spycatcher (nap)
With Karl Burke’s yard going great guns at the moment, Spycatcher looks the one to follow for this Group 2. He’s had a great season already, landing the Prix de Ris-Orange at Deauville in July, before returning to that track to just lose out to outsider King Gold in the Group 1 Maurice de Gheest last month. Ground to suit, and this ease in grade makes him easy to back. The one to beat

Betfred St Leger Stakes (Group 1) 3.35
Arrest (nb)
The final Classic of the season, and a classic renewal in store on this expansive Town Moor course. There is sure to be plenty of support for Aidan O’Brien’s Continuous after taking the Great Voltigeur at York last month, with the re-opposing Gregory nearly 5 lengths back, but ready preference is for John & Thady Gosden’s Arrest. After winning the Chester Vase back in May, unsuitably quick ground in The Derby and the King Edward VII at Royal Ascot scuppered his chances, but returned to ground with a bit of cut in the Listed Geoffrey Freer Stakes at Newbury, this Frankel colt was a comfortable winner. Frankie Dettori has changed his mount from Gregory to Arrest, which is notable, so Arrest gets the big tick for the oldest Classic

PJ Towey Construction Handicap 4.10
Symbol Of Light
A chance is taken on Julie Camacho’s Symbol Of Light for this Class 2 Handicap. Formerly with Charlie Appleby, he’s now housed at her Highfield Stables in Malton. After wind surgery he made a pleasing comeback on the all-weather at Newcastle, finishing well in a decent race. Symbol Of Light has only run on turf once, on debut at Newmarket, but is well-bred and could be the answer. Go close

British EBF 40th Anniversary Maiden Stakes 4.45
Bellum Justum
Andrew Balding’s Sea The Stars colt showed enough on his second run at Newmarket to get the nudge for this. On a flatter track here at Town Moor, every reason to hope there is further progress to come, and with Oisin Murphy on the reins, has to be high on the shortlist. Go close

Hippo Pro 3 Sealant Handicap 5.20
Sonny Liston
A really hot handicap to finish St Leger day on Town Moor, and Sonny Liston might be the one to bring home the bacon. As solid as you like in these big-field handicaps, and with Ryan Moore returning to the saddle, trainer Ralph Beckett can add some gloss to an already brilliant season. Sonny Liston is sure to be in the thick of things from an excellent draw in Stall 4

The Mandarin

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