Horses To Follow » Guarantee


Guarantee was impressive in winning the three-year-old Melrose Handicap at York on Saturday, really improving for the step up to a mile and three quarters.

Admittedly he probably benefitted from being held up off a fast pace – Daneking ensured it was a real test by pressing on for home around the home turn – and he did have a largely trouble free run down the outside, but so did the second and third, and they were held right up too – Cardinal Walter, the third horse, in fact was held up last of all. It is difficult to argue that Guarantee’s was not the best horse in the race on the day.

What made this performance even more impressive was the fact that, as the pace just slackened slightly passing through half way, Guarantee was in danger of running into the back of Sir Graham Wade in front of him and that set him alight. He seemed to be wasting valuable energy by racing too freely well into the race, but it obviously made no difference to him. He travelled into the race best of all, he got to the front few quite easily two furlongs from home and he showed a good turn of foot given how hard the gallop had been to pull out a few lengths coming inside the final furlong. He soon put the race to bed and continued to extend his advantage all the way to the line.

The time was really good, over three seconds quicker than the Ebor later on the card (although, admittedly, the pace in the Ebor was really sedate), and the winner of the Ebor, Willing Foe, was carrying 2lb less than Guarantee. It was much faster comparatively than the Group 2 Lonsdale Cup too.

Guarantee only made his debut in June and this was just his fourth run, he should improve again for it, and he could be very good indeed. He deserves to take his chance in the St Leger on the back of this, and the 25/1 about him does look big.

25th August 2012