Pontefract plays host to a very nice looking Listed race today, and it has attracted a useful looking field.
Dawn Of Hope is a Mastercraftsman filly, and she is the highest rated in the field, on a mark of 108. She ran well for a long way in the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot (Group 2) before finishing mid-division, and connections will surely be hoping for a big run in this, as it's a very big drop down in Class. Her last run in a Listed race saw her finish third behind Kool Kompany at Doncaster, but that was a far stronger looking race than this one, and I think she will take a lot of beating if on form. Andrea Atzeni takes the ride and he has been flying recently. Over the past two weeks, he's had nine winners (37.50%) and 15 places (62.50%) from 24 runners, for level stakes profits of 3.24 and 5.90 respectively.
The Hughie Morrison-trained Pirouette also raced in the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes and finished one place and two and a quarter lengths behind Dawn Of Hope. She was third in a Group 3 at Lingfield three runs ago and followed that up with a decent second place in a Listed event at Musselburgh prior to Ascot. She does have a bit to find with Dawn Of Hope on her Ascot showing, however, I think the likely slower pace in this race will benefit her more. Hughie Morrison's horses are also running very well at the moment, and although he doesn't send many to Pontefract, he has a very good record with the ones he does.
Permission was fourth last time out in a Listed race at Nottingham, however, that was over ten furlongs and I think the drop back down to a mile will be of benefit. Prior to that, she was second in a useful handicap behind Tisbutadream, form that was emphatically franked on Saturday at Sandown where Tisbutadream won a very nice looking Listed race. If jockey Daniel Muscutt is able to get her to settle early on (she has a tendency to be a slow starter and be very keen), then I think she can gradually make her way into the race, and her stamina could prove very useful if this is a quickly run race.
Home Cummins runs for the powerful Richard Fahey yard, but I have a feeling she is just a little bit below the level required to win this. She has been running in some high-quality handicaps, but not really threatening in those, and although a race in a smaller field would surely benefit, she will need to produce something special to get involved here today. Fahey does have an excellent record here at Pontefract however, as over the last five years he's had 51 winners (19.03%) and 111 places (41.42%) from 268 runners, for level stakes profits of 30.05 and 17.18 respectively.
Dawn Of Hope - 3 points win @ 11/8 (Paddy Power, Skybet)