The St Leger Festival at Doncaster is about much more than just one race. Racing fans have their pick of quality contests throughout the four days of the meeting. That’s the case on Saturday when the Champagne Stakes is cast in the role of warm up for the year’s final Classic. This Group 2 race takes place over seven furlongs, six yards and is a chance for two-year-old to set pulses racing. Connections of all the competitors will hope that their young charges can use this as a platform for the Dewhurst Stakes and beyond but the field face a tough task to get this favourite beaten.
Read on for our race analysis and tips or how about grabbing a free bet?
Favourite Has the Edge in Top Two Battle
Backers of Too Darn Hot are confident that he will live up to his name and his billing as the firm Champagne Stakes favourite at odds of 1/2 with Ladbrokes. John Gosden’s colt has certainly managed to do that so far in his young career with wins in both his starts.
The first of those came in a maiden at Sandown where he obliged favourite backers with a performance that belied his lack of experience. Gosden was impressed enough with that performance to enter Too Darn Hot in the Group 3 Solario Stakes also at Sandown. He was not missed by the bookies but the nature of his win made him look very good value at even money.
Those wins have set the foundations for what could be a very successful career. As Too Darn Hot keeps taking steps up in class he’ll be pushed harder and harder and he’ll doubtless have the task of his career to date at Doncaster.
The main challenge will be laid down by Dark Vision. Mark Johnston’s colt is unbeaten and has the potential to kick on and be something very good. He just looks more like one to keep an eye on for the future than one who will get the better of Too Darn Hot at this stage.
Can Phoenix Of Spain Claim Another Valuable Prize?
Charlie Hills has taken the St Leger meeting very seriously with a string of quality horses entered in races throughout the meeting. Phoenix Of Spain is right up there with his most confident chances of success so he looks a very good each way option in the Champagne Stakes at 8/1 with bet365.
Phoenix Of Spain is already a winner at Group level having claimed the Group 3 Acomb Stakes last month. He’s a very big horse for his age and he certainly intimidated the competition coming down the closing straight at York. Displainy an incredible turn of pace, he come through the entire field that day to land a decent prize. It remains to be seen whether James Doyle employs tactics similar to those used by Jamie Spence. Either way, Phoenix Of Spain’s finishing ability makes him a real danger so an each way bet looks a very sensible play indeed.