1pt win Blue Point @9/1, 15:30 Newmarket, Saturday

There’s a familiar feel to this year’s Group-One Dewhurst Stakes, a seven-furlong heat for two-year-olds that has often crowed the champion juvenile.

In Churchill, Aidan O’Brien once again has the odds-on favourite and it may be folly to take him on given the trainer’s ridiculous form in Group One races.

An unprecedented 1-2-3 in the Arc last weekend was yesterday followed up by a facile success for his Rhododendron in the Fillies’ Mile, and there’s a nagging sense of inevitability that Churchill can produce something akin to Air Force Blue’s romp in last season’s renewal.

It was hard not to be impressed by the way he brushed aside the consistent and classy Mehmas in the National Stakes at Curragh last time out, but it feels like the bookies are taking no chances with his price given recent events and that’s perhaps warped the market.

It’s a great betting race because there are all sorts of profiles coming into it and plenty of nice prices to take him on with.

Seven Heavens, an unbeaten son of the remarkable Frankel who carries the same silks, also carries some stable confidence from the John Gosden yard and can be backed at 9/1 to progress past today’s opponents.

He has some collateral form with Churchill as National Stakes third Lockheed, beaten five lengths by O’Brien’s colt, was beaten a length by Seven Heavens on début.

That line is a little scrambled as, in the latter race, both horses made their first appearances and Lockheed in particular has probably improved past what he showed there.

It’d be fun to back Seven Heavens and he might be a big talent, but in a race as competitive as this, and at that price, I’m looking elsewhere for more established form.

Andrew Balding’s South Seas is another with an unbeaten record, though all three wins have come with ‘soft’ in the going description and it’ll be firm and fast at Newmarket today.

He’s a nice price at 9/1 as well, particularly if he can prove his effectiveness on this surface, but I have doubts about the strength of his last win as the eye-catching third Eqitraan was beaten next time out by a horse who’s been well beaten by others with close form ties to today’s opponents.

Rivet and Thunder Snow appear closely matched on the form of their Champagne Stakes 1-2, and at 10/1 and 18/1 respectively there could be value in siding with that form-line, however I’m keen to give runaway Gimcrack winner BLUE POINT a chance to redeem himself after his surprise defeat to The Last Lion here in the Middle Park Stakes two weeks ago.

It certainly wasn’t a bad run from the Godolphin horse as he soundly beat Mehmas by a couple of lengths to finish a close second – form that ties closely with Churchill – and a strong head wind on the day would have made the winner very hard to pass.

This is a step up in trip to seven furlongs, which is uncharted territory for the son of Sharmadal, however his father won this race as well as the Group One St James’ Palace Stakes over a mile, so there’s reason to believe he’ll stay and be suited to the track.

Concerns are the quick turnaround between races and the chance he’s already had one too many, and there is something of a blot on his form-book at Newmarket suggesting a flat track like York, where he easily won the Gimcrack, may be more up his street.

However, he’s a massive price at 9/1 given he’s now got proven Group One form and gets his ground so we’ll chance he’s good enough to beat a favourite who still has to prove himself on this course and surface.

1pt win Blue Point @9/1, 15:30 Newmarket, Saturday

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