Racing Preview: Newmarket, Thursday July 9th

The three-day July Festival at Newmarket moves into day two on Friday

Racing pundit Alan Marron runs the rule over the opening day of the July Festival at Newnarket

It is day one of the superb three-day July Festival at Newmarket, one of the highlights of the summer in Britain, a meeting that culminates in Group 1 Darley July Cup day on Saturday.

Here to preview the opening day is our regular racing pundit and tipster, Alan Marron



This looks a nice maiden to start the day and the Charlie Appleby-trained MISS JINGLES could be the one to pay most attention to.

The stable has a very good record in this race, having won it in 2017 and 2018. She is bred to be quite forward early in her career so I would expect her to go very close for a stable who have been in cracking form since racing resumed.


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CHAIRMANOFTHEBOARD has caught my eye on a couple of occasions throughout his career as he travels well through his races but will need luck in running.

His last run at Newmarket is a strong piece of form, where he finished third to Bungee Jump. Bungee Jump made all that day and had his rivals under pressure most of the way. Chairmanoftheboard did well to finish as close as he did that day as he was out the back for much of the way.

He duly improved on that next time out when he was victorious at Windso,r beating Wedding Date off a mark of 83. He ran off his new mark of 89 last time when the race, again, wasn’t run to suit.

I think there is every chance he will get a strong pace this time around and he will hopefully be finishing strongly from off the pace.

He looks overpriced on what he has achieved this season so far.




Maydanny looks to be all the rage here and will likely prove hard to beat but I will take a chance on LAWN RANGER who likes to get on with things from the front and could prove hard to catch.

He was successful three times last season and gets in here off the same mark of 92 as he was when third at Newbury last time out. He set a blistering pace and, if you watch the race back, he kept on well after being headed to show that he was in decent form.

As we saw in the Epsom Derby, if you can dictate the pace at your own tempo it can work out very well.

This race looks to have plenty of hold-up performers so I will be hoping Callum Shepherd, who has been in great form of late and is riding with confidence, can get away in front and give them plenty to think about.

Solid each-way chance and will be hard to keep out of the frame.




While we don’t exactly know what TILSIT achieved when he demolished the field at Newcastle last time out by 19 lengths, he looks like a rapidly-improving individual who could go very close here if he has progressed again.

The Racing Post comments suggested that he was sweating and coltish last time so he still has plenty of growing up to do. I just love the way he stretched clear at Newcastle – you would mostly see a jockey easing up and winning by two or three lengths but Ben Curtis kept him up to his work all the way to the line.

His debut was a nice second behind Al Salt, who has plenty of ability, and whilst veering up the straight, won again earlier this week. The filly that finished fifth, Rosa Gold, has won twice since so there is substance to the form.

This will be Tilsit’s first run on grass and, if he can progress from his Newcastle victory, he could be very exciting.




One of the features of the day and it is all about the Appleby and Buick combination here with AL DABARAN.

He slightly disappointed me at Royal Ascot when he finished third behind Santiago, but that form got a huge boost when Santiago backed it up by winning the Irish Derby at the Curragh.

Al Dabaran will need everything to drop right but I think this race will really suit him. He has some strong form-lines in France from last season, where he finished ahead of The Summit, who ran a cracking race in the French Derby last weekend. He drops back slightly in trip here and, if William Buick can get him settled, I could see him finish his race strongly and be far too good for the opposition.

The Appleby team will be on cloud nine following the performance of Ghaiyaath in the Eclipse and I think they have every chance of getting back in the winner’s enclosure here.




Oisin Murphy mentioned TACTICAL as a two year-old to follow before his debut and he ran a highly encouraging race to finish third here at Newmarket.  He then improved massively off the back of that run when he was a very well-backed winner of the Windsor Castle at Royal Ascot under James Doyle.  William Buick is on board this time around and I think he has a very strong chance of picking up another decent victory on the day.

Tactical produced a nice turn of foot in the Windsor Castle after travelling very well throughout the race and he stuck his head down and tried all the way to the line. He could turn out to be a very smart individual by the end of the season and I think he will take all the beating here.



3.35 6F HANDICAP, £60,000

One of the most interesting runners on the card runs here, BYLINE trained by Kevin Ryan and ridden by Megan Nicholls.

This horse has been in my tracker since he made his debut and I always thought he would get better with age and improve from two to three. His debut run was full of promise and he looked like he would come on plenty for it He duly did when he absolutely bolted up at Hamilton to break his maiden in June last year.

He finished down the field in both the Gimcrack and a very competitive nursery on his last run of the season but his first run this season was very eye-catching at Haydock when he finished third to Brad The Brief, who reopposes here.

He held every chance inside the final furlong but I just think he got caught out by lack of race fitness.

This looks the ideal race for him as he will be able to travel and if he gets luck in running he will go very close.




William Buick could be the man to follow as OLD PERSIAN gives him a very good chance of getting another winner on the board.

This horse is a globetrotter who has plenty of solid form, including two Group One wins, one at Woodbine and one at Meydan. He disappointed last time out in Saint-Cloud but there looked to be something amiss and I think he will come on plenty for that and looks a big price here.

If Charlie Appleby can coax this horse back to anything like the form he showed as a three year-old, he should be far too classy for these. He won the Great Voltigeur at York back in 2018 when he had his stablemate Cross Counter back in second and the very classy Kew Gardens back in third. He will race in first-time cheek-pieces today

He has a good record at Newmarket and I think he will go very close here.

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*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article