Past Winners » Astronereus


I am backing Astronereus here. Amanda Perrett’s colt was progressive as a three-year-old last year, running really well in two decent handicaps when stepped up to a mile and a half.

In the first of them, in the Shergar Cup Classic, they went a really strong pace and those who had raced in the first four through the early part of the race faded to fill the last four positions. Astronereus was the only one of the first five home who had not been held up having tracked the first four.

On top of that, he was stepping up in trip and he travelled really powerfully – too powerfully for a long way – so he did really well to stick on as well as he did, to finish as close as he did, beaten just a nose by Our Gabrial.

He ran really well again on his final start last term in a really hot three-year-old heritage handicap at Ascot. He travelled well and kept on to finish fourth to some very progressive rivals. (Second Step, yesterday’s Jockey Club Stakes winner, was only seventh in that race, racing off a mark of 93).

Astronereus has plenty of scope to improve again, racing now off just a 2lb higher mark. Indeed, he came out last month and shaped with lots of promise off his new mark over an inadequate 10 furlongs at Pontefract. He raced away from the inside rail, which is often heavily favoured early in the season at Pontefract, but he made a nice move around the home turn before lack of a recent run seemed to tell, and he was passed for third by his old rival Gothic, who re-opposes again today.

He is a big powerful son of Sea The Stars, so there could still be lots more to come from him this year as a four-year-old. He won his maiden impressively on soft ground, but that final run last season at Ascot was on really fast ground so he shouldn’t have a problem with today’s conditions. Amanda Perrett has her horses in good form, and Pat Dobbs is an under-rated rider. Astronereus should be clear favourite in my book, and he is worth backing at 7/1.