Horses To Follow » Dawaam


Dawaam did well to get as close as he got in the John Smith’s Cup at York on Saturday. Dropped in behind runners early on from his outside draw, he wasn’t helped by the sedate early pace. He was one of several horses who wanted to go faster than they were going though the first few furlongs, and it wasn’t ideal that he was fourth last of the 17 runners as they left the back straight. He travelled well around the home turn though, and he made good ground towards the far side early in the home straight. Still on the bridle as they raced to the two-furlong marker, he wasn’t helped by Winter Reprise’s move to the right in front of him, it meant that he had to check and then move to his left, he had to move over close to the inside rail, which probably wasn’t the fastest part of the track. Even so, he stayed on well from there all the way to the line to get up and take fourth place, beaten a total of just over two lengths.

Owen Burrows’ horse is generally a better horse on all-weather than he is on turf, but he did run well for a long way in the Wolferton Handicap at Royal Ascot on his previous run. His turf mark was raised to 105 after that, equal to his all-weather mark, but he raced off his old turf mark of 97 on Saturday. Things will be more difficult for him now on turf, but he has been dropped back down to 102, so not as difficult as they might have been, but he will still be interesting now wherever he goes next. He will be of particular interest back on all-weather or back at Ascot, a track at which all-weather form can often be replicated. While his best form is over 10 furlongs now, he has pace, he travels well through his races, he is effective over a mile, and a strong handicap over Ascot’s straight mile, on Ascot’s sand-based straight track, could be ideal. The Balmoral Handicap on British Champions’ Day at Ascot would be an interesting mid-range target.
York, 10th July 2021