As ever when we get towards the end of the flat racing season, attentions have already begun to be turned to the big races of next season. The ante post markets for many of the big three-year-old races have already been priced up by the bookies but expect significant changes in the prices after Saturday’s Mill Reef Stakes.
This Group 2 contest at Newbury always attracts top class juveniles. We certainly have an exciting renewal in prospect on Saturday containing a selection of star two-year-olds doing battle over six furlongs.
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Mill Reef Stakes Tips
Odds correct at the time of writing and are subject to change.
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Favourite Can Get Back on Track
The talk of potential stars of the future often begins long before horses even take to the track. Due to his breeding, cost and the fact he was sent to Aidan O’Brien’s yard, people have been excited about Sergei Prokofiev’s potential for some time now.
Things began well for this son of Scat Daddy as he built on a promising first race with wins in his next two. They included a Listed win at Naas which was impressive enough for O’Brien to enter Sergei Prokofiev in the Group 2 Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot. There was absolutely no shame in finishing behind Calyx and Advertise at Ascot but things could have been better as he had to switch twice during the race.
Next up was a trip to the Curragh where Sergei Prokofiev was very disappointing when finishing last in the Phoenix Stakes. There were extenuating circumstances to that performance though as much of the Ballydoyle stable were suffering with illness. Thankfully, O’Brien’s horses appear to be over those problems which should be good news for Sergei Prokofiev backers.
This is one two-year-old who looks every inch a future Group 1 winner. Setbacks are almost guaranteed for juveniles but Sergei Prokofiev is ready to get back on track and become the third winning favourite of the Mill Reef Stakes in four years at 9/4 with bet365.
Is Burke in Line for Another Big Win?
Karl Burke is one of the finest examples of the importance of patience in horse racing. Burke has been training since 1991 and steadily worked away, improving his skills and adding to his string of horses before securing his first Group 1 success in 2009. Thanks to some star horses, Burke has had further success at the top level in recent years with the highlight of his racing career coming just last week thanks to Laurens’ win in the Matron Stakes.
Burke made sure to celebrate that win but got back to work very soon after as he looks to capitalise on the form of his yard. The promising True Mason has a chance to keep the big wins coming at Newbury where he is pretty well fancied at 7/1 with Betfred.
True Mason is in good form himself. He finished third to Pretty Pollyanna and Signora Cabello, two juveniles of the very top class, in a Group 1 last time out and should be a real feature in the Mill Reef Stakes, especially if rain falls at Newbury.