Past Winners » Sir Maximilian


A low draw is a big advantage at Chester over any distance, but the advantage is particularly pronounced over the minimum trip. In the last 10 renewals of this race, the first three home have been drawn: 3-5-8 (of 13 runners), 2-7-9 (of 14), 7-9-13 (of 13), 3-7-5 (of 13), 4-1-6 (of 12), 7-2-8 (of 14), 6-7-4 (of 13), 2-4-8 (of 15), 6-1-4 (of 14) and 4-2-1 (of 14).

So six of the 10 winners were drawn four or lower, all 10 were drawn seven or lower, only one horse of the 20 horses who filled the first two places was drawn higher than seven, and only one of the 30 horses who filled the first three places was drawn higher than nine. You really have to be drawn low if you are to have a chance of winning this race.

Caspian Prince has drawn the perfect stall, right along the inside rail, and it is understandable that he is favourite. However, he is going up the weights now. He is 7lb higher than he was when he won at Epsom on his penultimate outing, and he is 1lb higher than he was when he was beaten at Wolverhampton last time. Also, there is a chance that he will be forced to go too fast from early from his inside berth, and that he will be caught in the short home straight. I am happy to be against him at 9/2 …

Sir Maximilian is a little more of a leap of faith, but he was progressive for Ian Williams last season, and he rounded off the term with a fine run for Nicky Vaughan to finish third in a decent five-furlong handicap at Sandown from stall 11, in a race in which the first two home emerged from stalls three and two respectively. It was a fine effort from a disadvantageous draw. Also, the fourth horse, Dungannon, who also raced from a high draw, came out and won three of his next four races, and rounded off the season on a mark of 101, 15lb higher than his Sandown mark

Sir Maximilian has had much better luck with the draw today, having drawn stall four, and there is every chance that new trainer Tim Pitt will have him primed for this. This is his seasonal debut, but he won on his debut last term, and his rating of 88 is a mark off which he can win. He bounces off fast ground, and he is worth backing at 7/1.