Qipco 2000 Guineas
Group 1, Newmarket 15:45
£500,000 added,
3yo only,
1m, Class 1  
Saturday 30th April 2016

Free Racing Tips

Massaat has a major shout in 2000 Guineas

Air Force Blue is a red-hot favourite for the 2000 Guineas, but Massaat doesn’t have much to find on him and looks real each-way value in the 208th running of the colts’ Classic at Newmarket on Saturday.

© Racehorse Photos

Massaat shaped with bags of promise when runner-up on debut for now retired trainer Barry Hills, and duly went one better next time up when easily landing a decent 14-runner maiden at Leicester by 3 3/4 lengths.

Connections then pitched Massaat into Group 1 company for his final start of the campaign, and the son of Teofilo ran a stormer to finish runner-up to Air Force Blue in the Dewhurst Stakes over 7f at this venue.

After being held-up in fifth behind the leaders, Massaat made good headway down the centre two from home before keeping on nicely to be beaten 3 1/4 lengths without being unduly knocked about.

Although no match for the winner, it was a most taking performance full of promise, and Massaat remains a real sort full of scope who should come into his own as a three-year-old.

The step up to 1m will definitely be in his favour and, with Paul Hanagan in the saddle, Massaat looks capable of running a huge race for rookie handler Owen Burrows.

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Air Force Blue
© Caroline Norris
Air Force Blue

Air Force Blue ended last season as the champion juvenile, and is bidding to give Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien his eighth winner in the race.

This colt won four of his five starts as a two-year-old and, prior to his scintillating success in the Dewhurst, had landed a brace of Group 1 contests at the Curragh.

There is little doubt that the son of War front is a very classy sort, and O’Brien has described him as a “monster”. However, Air Force Blue has always come across as a very speedy type and if there are any stamina doubts this stiff mile will find him out.

It’s also a bit of a worry that connections are fitting Air Force Blue with a tongue-tie for the first time, suggesting that he may have some breathing issues. So, although Air Force Blue sets a clear standard on form, there may be enough reasons to take him on.

Qipco 2000 Guineas Stakes
(British Champions Series) (Group 1)
£500,000 added, 3yo only, 1m, Class 1
13 runners
Going: Good to Soft, Good in places

No Form Horse Weight Jockey Trainer Age
1 (5) 121 11- Air Force Blue (USA) 203 9-0 t1 R L Moore A P O'Brien 3
2 (13) 312- Air Vice Marshal (USA) 294 9-0 J A Heffernan A P O'Brien 3
3 (2) 121 132- Buratino (IRE) 217 9-0 James Doyle M Johnston 3
4 (10) 191 15-6 First Selection (SPA) 58 9-0 h Jim Crowley S Crisford 3
5 (1) 211 13- Galileo Gold 209 9-0 L Dettori H Palmer 3
6 (11) 211 27- Herald The Dawn (IRE) 209 9-0 K J Manning J S Bolger 3
7 (4) 164 6-5 Kentucky-connection (USA) 28 9-0 b1 Connor Beasley B Smart 3
8 (7) 511- Marcel (IRE) 189 9-0 P J Smullen P W Chapple-Hyam 3
9 (8) 212- Massaat (IRE) 203 9-0 P Hanagan Owen Burrows 3
10 (3) 221-5 Ribchester (IRE) 23 9-0 W Buick R A Fahey 3
11 (9) 331 12-1 Stormy Antarctic 16 9-0 G Baker Ed Walker 3
12 (6) 611 3-3 Zhui Feng (IRE) 18 9-0 T P Queally Mrs A J Perrett 3
13 (12) 145- Zonderland 189 9-0 A Kirby C G Cox 3

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