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Richard Fahey runner tipped to come out on top against Hoof It
10:40am Tuesday 15th May 2012 in Sport
Local speedsters Mayson and Hoof It go head-to-head on Knavesmire tomorrow as York opens its doors for the first time in 2012.
Mayson, the up-and-coming starlet trained by Malton’s Richard Fahey, has won his last two starts at Newmarket, while Hoof It, trained by Mick Easterby at Sheriff Hutton, is making his seasonal debut after proving himself in the top-flight of sprinters last year.
It promises to be a fascinating clash in the £100,000 Duke Of York totepool Stakes over six furlongs.
Fahey won this race in 2009 with Utmost Respect, who tragically died of peritonitis that summer. The trainer believes that Mayson has the ability and potential to be the equal of Utmost Respect.
A horse, who was left orphaned when his dam died when he was three months old, and was hand-reared by owner-breeders David and Emma Armstrong, Mayson has looked the real deal in his last two starts in Listed and Group 3 company.
He will again be partnered by champion jockey Paul Hanagan, who knows him so well.
Hoof It will be ridden for the first time by Ryan Moore.
Twice a York winner last season, he went on to gain a runaway win in the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood and only narrowly came up short in the Group 1 Haydock Park Sprint Cup on his final start, when he suffered trouble in running.
Part-owned by top golfer Lee Westwood, Hoof It has few peers in the sprinting division.
Whether he will be on his top game for his first outing of the campaign, and whether he finds the York ground softer than ideal, is debatable.
There are no such doubts about the in-form Mayson, who is fancied to have the edge in this crackerjack of a sprint.
Fahey, leading trainer at York for the last six years, could be set for a rewarding first day.
Apart from Mayson, he has several other good chances, particularly with Mica Mika, Tatlisu and Baccarat.
Mika Mika won easily at Chester last week and turns out again in the Countrywide Freight Handicap. His 6lb penalty is virtually erased by Shane B Kelly’s 5lb allowance and, although this is a tougher race, he must have a good chance.
Tatlisu is napped to follow up his Musselburgh debut in the ripleycollection.com EBF Novice Stakes, while Baccarat is not to be under-estimated in the McArthurglen’s York Designer Outlet Handicap.
Owned by Sir Robert Ogden, he won one of his two races last season and it the type to come into his own this term.
The Tattersalls Musidora Stakes has attracted a five-strong field and, given the form of the Aidan O’Brien horses, Twirl gets the vote to lift this Group 3 prize.
Winner of one of her two races last season, Twirl shaped well in Listed company to finish second at The Curragh on her re-appearance.
She is open to plenty of improvement and is fancied to have the edge over The Fugue, a decent fourth in the 1,000 Guineas.
John Gosden, trainer of The Fugue, is fancied to land the opening Infinity Tyres Handicap with Gatewood.
The four-year-old must be held in high regard to have been kept in training by Gosden for another season.
He ran only three times last year, winning at Salisbury and finishing fourth in a good handicap at Ascot. He looks set for a profitable campaign.
Hambleton trainer Kevin Ryan has a high opinion of York Glory, a Knavesmire winner last season, who returns to the fray in the wewillbuyyourcar.com Handicap. He is not one to dismiss lightly.
York Glory is what every trainer, owner and jockey wants this week.
1.30 Gatewood, 2.00 York Glory, 2.30 Twirl, 3.00 Mayson, 3.35 Mica Mika, 4.10 Tatlisu (NAP), 4.45 Baccarat.
1.50 Legal Legacy, 2.20 Chjimes, 2.50 Fault, 3.20 Warbond, 3.55 Tawaasul, 4.30 Woolston Ferry, 5.05 Sand Skier, 5.35 Broughtons Bandit.
Tomorrow’s other meetings: Bath, Fontwell and Perth.
Today’s meetings: Beverley, Hereford, Kempton, Southwell and Wincanton.