Almohandesah seeks Listed breakthrough at Sandown

Horse Racing

Burke filly one of eight previous winners in nine-strong Star Stakes field.

Karl Burke’s Almohandesah will bid for a breakthrough Listed success in the British Stallion Studs EBF Star Stakes at Sandown.

The two-year-old has run twice, finishing second on her debut at Redcar in early June before getting off the mark with a narrow victory at Pontefract last time out.

The daughter of Postponed will step up in both trip and grade as she tackles seven furlongs in Listed company for the first time on Thursday.

“She deserves her chance and she deserves to take a pop at some black type,” said Middleham trainer Burke.

“It looks a tough race for her, but we’re happy with the conditions, and she’s in good form.

“She won’t mind the ground at all, and seven furlongs will definitely suit her.”

Charlie Appleby’s Wild Beauty is bid for a hat-trick, having won at Haydock and Newbury.

Both performances were on soft ground, but Appleby is not concerned about how the Frankel filly will cope with Sandown’s good to firm surface.

“She has progressed on each of her last two starts,” he said.

“We stepped her up in trip last time, and I was very pleased with that performance on soft ground.

“She deserves to take her chance in a black-type race – it is the right race for her, and she will be well suited by the stiff track.

“We’ve got a bit of a wide draw. But there are only nine runners, so I’m not that concerned about that.

“She goes there in great order – but like a lot of them in the field, she will be testing her mettle there.

“The quicker ground doesn’t worry me because the dam’s side of the family go on it – we’ve not encountered quick ground yet, but it doesn’t worry me.”

John and Thady Gosden are set to run two in the race, including the Cheveley Park-owned Inspiral – a winner on her racecourse debut at Newmarket last month.

“She is extremely well bred and ran well first time out under a nice hands-and-heels ride over seven furlongs at Newmarket,” said Thady Gosden.

“On the basis of that, she deserves to go straight into a black-type race. She has got a lovely big stride on her and she will get further in time.

“It’s a stiff seven at Sandown, and hopefully that will suit, while her form was given a good boost after the runner-up in her last race won at Newmarket recently.”

Sunstrike also represents the Gosden stable, having finished eighth in the Group Three Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot on her most recent appearance.

“She seems like she is a top-of-the-ground filly,” said Gosden.

“When we got to Ascot it was when they had that torrential rain, and that didn’t help her, but she still ran respectably in the Albany.

“Hopefully she will be more competitive on the step up to seven furlongs on better ground.”

Charlie Hills runs debut winner Allayaali, who took a Doncaster maiden in June, and Profound Alexander searches a first career victory for William Muir and Chris Grassick.

Mark Johnston will saddle dual winner Qipao, with David Evans’ Fabiosa and Simon and Ed Crisford’s Safra completing the field of nine.

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