Past Winners » Rio De La Plata


Rainbow Peak is the most likely winner of this, he is a really likeable individual who has always had the potential to be top class, but he is at his best over 10 furlongs on easy ground, so an extended mile on fast ground at a sharp track leaves him vulnerable – as we saw in the Hambleton Handicap in May – and opposable at a short price.

Distant Memories would also prefer further and easier ground, while Kings Gambit would prefer further, but Rio De La Plata should be competing over his optimum conditions – an extended mile on good ground. You can easily forgive him his run at Haydock last time, when the ground was just too soft and the 10 furlongs too far, but he had shaped as if returning to something like his old self when he beat the useful Balcarce Nov on his UK seasonal debut at Nottingham in June, and he improved again to dead-heat with Mabait in a listed race at Pontefract last month.

He is gradually getting back to his old self, and it is reasonable to expect another step forward on his Pontefract run today as the Saeed Bin Suroor horses begin to hit top form, as they tend to do at this time of year on an annual basis. A high class juvenile, Rio De La Plata doesn’t have to improve a lot on his Pontefract run to have a real chance of winning this, and he is over-priced at 9/1.