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Middle-distance Mr Dependable can upset mercurial Ghaiyyath

Keith Melrose says last year's winner can be relied upon to run his race

Ghaiyyath: devastating on his day, but not all that reliable
1 of 1

Defoe
3.35 Newmarket
Buy at 17 on the index

Ask for a traditional bookmaker bet in the Coronation Stakes and I would probably side with Ghaiyyath. He has enough in his favour to think this might be one of his going days. If it is, he will win.

If it is not, though, he will probably bomb out and cost his buyers the lot. He really is not a spread betting option, even on the match bets where he can be bought at 2 against Stradivarius. He could as easily lose by a dozen lengths as win.

The spread betting option in the Coronation Cup is not Ghaiyyath, nor even Stradivarius, who is reliable over staying trips but remains something of an unknown quantity against top-class 1m4f horses. Defoe is the dependable option for buyers.

He is the defending champion, which may not matter so much given the race would normally be run at Epsom. However, he has also been first and second in the last two runnings of the Jockey Club Stakes, a 1m4f race over the Rowley Mile that is normally a starting point for top older middle-distance horses. That is in effect what the Coronation Cup is in 2020.

Defoe is pretty dependable if you do not run him against the very best horses. In the slightly lesser Group 1s and below, he rarely misses completely. If Ghaiyyath delivers one of his specials, Defoe will not be so far back as to cost his buyers dearly. If the favourite bombs out, he is the likeliest alternative winner.

3.35 Newmarket
Sporting (50-25-10): 26-29 Ghaiyyath, 18-21 Stradivarius, 14-17 Defoe, 10-13 Anthony Van Dyck, 7-9 Broome, 1-3 Alounak, Desert Encounter

Match bets: Ghaiyyath/Stradivarius 1-2; Defoe/Anthony Van Dyck 0.75-1.75

3.00 Newmarket
Sporting (50-25-10): 27-30 Sangarius, 9-12 Century Dream, Mythical Magic, 7-9 Escobar, Lord Tennyson, Momkin, 6-8 Dawaam, Marie's Diamond, 5-7 Prince Eiji, 4-6 Oh This Is Us, Vale Of Kent, 3-5 Bless Him

Match bet: The field/Sangarius 2-3


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The spread betting option in the Coronation Cup is not Ghaiyyath, nor even Stradivarius
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