The runners to watch out for as July course opens its doors
As the July course throws open its doors for the summer, Newmarket correspondent David Milnes sets the scene and pinpoints five runners to keep a beady eye on
Racing in Newmarket makes its annual move across the famous Heath from the Rowley Mile to the July course on Saturday, where the Pimm's-and-panamas venue hosts the first of its 21 fixtures this season.
The unique summer setting has everything racegoers need for the season, including a splendid shaded pre-parade ring that is one of very few in Britain where the public are allowed access.
This year the course is unveiling its new trackside Champions Lawn, which is said to have been "transformed into an English country garden", while among other changes is the introduction of a big screen at the back of the head-on stand so people can see the action from the paddock, something that has proved popular on the Rowley Mile.
Newmarket boss Amy Starkey said: "We're very excited about kicking off the new season on the July course, where there is a new Champions Lawn, which is something that was previously in use only for the July festival.
"There's also something different for the kids as well as we've a new play park, and our mascot Rowley has already tested out the slide!"
The season gets off to a flying start with an eight-race card kicking off with a maiden that includes Godolphin's 2.6 million guineas purchase Glorious Journey, the joint-most expensive yearling bought at auction in Europe last year.
Here are five runners who catch who eye . . .
1.25 Glorious Journey
Racegoers should get to the July course early to see what 2.6 million guineas gets you, for that's what it cost to buy this Godolphin newcomer, who has been doing everything right in his work on the local Limekilns. A joint-highest priced yearling in Europe in 2016 when sold at nearby Tattersalls last October, he is well forward but "won't be going to Royal Ascot" according his trainer Charlie Appleby.
1.25 Take Me With You
Noseda has received significant new investment in recent months from Phoenix Thoroughbred, who stumped up $800,000 to purchase this daughter of Scat Daddy at the Fasig-Tipton Breeze-Up Sales. The filly's regular work rider, Noseda's wife Kerri, is also her purchaser, and the team are hopeful of a good run in the stronger of the two divisions of the maiden.
Members of the press have already had a peek at this son of Showcasing as he was among those on parade at a media morning held at Kremlin Cottage Stables in April. A strong type, Encrypted is attempting to become Palmer's first debutant juvenile winner for owner Khalid Abdullah in what looks the weaker of the two divisions.
3.05 Spring Loaded
D'Arcy's stable star was ruled out of a similar contest at Windsor last Monday due to soft ground so the Charnwood Stables team will be hoping any showers bypass the summer course. The grey is using this as a warm up for another crack at the Wokingham at Royal Ascot, a race he finished seventh in a year ago.
The four-year-old, who is returning from over a year off in the finale, was thought to be a Royal Ascot prospect after winning his maiden by five lengths on the Rowley Mile last May. Another big-ticket item at 1.6m gns, the son of Dubawi ran here on his debut as a two-year-old in 2015.