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Wednesday, 19 December, 2018

Big handicaps, potential stars and the jumps kicks into gear

James Stevens with a look at what's happening over the next seven days

Ayr: The Ayr Gold Cup is this week's feature event
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After a quality weekend with seven Group 1s across Britain and Ireland, there is still plenty to look forward to from this week's action.


Jumps action kicks off the week with and Galway Hurdle third Leoncavallo making his chasing debut in a race (2.50) which was won by the useful Wait For Me last year. Elsewhere Kempton has attracted a quality card.

Meanwhile Tom Kerr begins the first of his series looking into the betting industry.


James Fanshawe's Bombyx was dubbed as a potential Classic contender at the start of the year but he hasn't quite reached that level – he's still a talented horse and he heads a competitive line-up at Yarmouth (2.50). There's also another good card at Kempton.

Tuesday's Racing Post includes the must-read Champions League supplement which is an essential betting guide to the competition. 


Sandown's Fortune Stakes (3.15) is the feature on Wednesday afternoon and the likes of Elm Park and Khafoo Shememi have won the mile contest in recent years. The Esher track always attracts top prospects and the conditions and novice races should be competitive.

Listed action also comes from Yarmouth where they stage the latest running of the John Musker Fillies' Stakes (3.00).


Ayr's three-day Gold Cup festival kicks off on on Thursday and there is Listed action the William Hill Doonside Cup (3.35). The Roger Charlton-trained Extra Elusive looks a lively contender in the 1m2f event. Yarmouth also stages a seven-race card.

Extra Elusive: Smart prospect could head to Ayr
Over in the USA, the Gordon Elliott-trained Galway Plate winner Clarcam is seeking Grade 1 glory in Belmont's Lonesome Glory Handicap Hurdle.


Ayr continues it's three-day festival with two Listed sprint prizes are on offer as well as the William Hill Ayr Bronze Cup. Newbury begins its two-day meeting with the Listed Dubai Duty Free Cup the feature on day one. The rest of the action comes from Newton Abbot and Newcastle.


The weekend's feature comes from Scotland in the historic and prestigious William Ayr Gold Cup (3.50). The 6f event is always one of the highlights in the sprint season and just under £125,000 will be handed to the winner.

Brando: Winner of last year's Ayr Gold Cup
Three Group prizes are on offer at Newbury on Saturday including the Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes which is always a quality Group 2. It was won by James Garfield last season and has attracted a quality field of entries once again. Elsewhere on the card the Group 3 World Trophy and Legacy Cup remain of interest. In Ireland the Group 3 Denny Cordell Lavarack & Lanwades Stud Fillies Stakes is being contested at Gowran Park.

It is also the first of two days of the Newmarket open weekend and Pricewise will be giving his selections for Saturday.


Plumpton and Uttoxeter always attract big trainers to their meetings and both hold meetings. Uttoxeter's juvenile hurdle is an obvious place of interest.

Read The Briefing from 8.30am daily on with all the day's latest going, weather, market moves and non-runner news


The weekend's feature comes from Scotland in the historic and prestigious Ayr Gold Cup handicap

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