Greater emphasis on speed expected to suit lightning-quick Thesme
EBF Musselburgh Fillies' Sprint Stakes (Listed) | 5f | 3yo+ fillies and mares | RUK
It understandably got lost in the debacle of Ayr's lost Western meeting, but the inaugural running of what will henceforth be known as the Arran Scottish Fillies' Sprint Stakes will take place on the wrong side of Scotland and carry a slightly different name.
The change carries other significance. Firstly, it makes the race half a furlong shorter than the distance the race will be run over at Ayr. Secondly, staging the race two weeks later amplifies the appearance of a bonus round for high-end handicappers looking to pick up a bit of black type.
The three highest-rated runners on BHA ratings can all claim black type already, most notably Clem Fandango who fittingly enough won the Listed Harry Rosebery Stakes at last year's Western meeting.
The reduction in trip is likely to suit Thesme, another black type owner, who has form over five and a half but is notoriously quick and ought to be suited by Musselburgh, where the five-furlong track has a similar reputation for speed.
The overall pace angle is an interesting factor to this race. Both Glenrowan Rose and Midnight Malibu are also habitual front runners. Whether Connor Beasley or David Allan see fit to try to match Thesme, who was fast enough to take them along in last year's Nunthorpe, will be the major thing to look out for in the opening furlong or so.
What they say
Robert Cowell, trainer of Cosmopolitan Girl
Like a lot of these, she's got a few pounds to find with a couple but she's consistent and had a good year and it would be a great way to finish off by sneaking into the top three. I don't think she'd have been far away at Ayr a couple of starts back had she not missed the break.
Michael Dods, trainer of Intense Romance and Mabs Cross
They're both a bit wrong at the weights but they've earned the right to try and get a bit of black type. Intense Romance has had a tremendous year, she's been on the go a long time but she tries hard and keeps running her race. She won't mind the ground. Mabs Cross hasn't been going quite as long and we've taken our time with her, she hasn't run since June. She's a decent filly who's improving all the time. She doesn't want it too soft or too quick, but Sunday is meant to be a drying day so that would do no harm.
Nigel Tinkler, trainer of Thesme
Race conditions will suit her and she's run well at the track before in one of their big handicaps. We're very appreciative of Musselburgh putting this on and it's a good prize so we thought we had to have a go. My only worry is that the ground might be a bit wet.
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