York day three selections: Royal Commando (20/1)

6f  Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Gimcrack Stakes (Group 2) (Colts & Geldings)  (Class 1) (2yo)

There have only been two winning favourites of the Gimcrack in the last decade, and Richard Hannon’s Threat has been beaten the last twice so is hardly the most imposing market leader. This is a very competitive race full of unexposed two-year-olds so he’s got to be taken on. Three of the last five winners have gone on to be Group One-winning sprinters, and speed is very much the most important trait in this race over York’s flat 6f. Dubai Station – who has an awful name – is very interesting back on fast ground as he’s raced with cut the last three times, running really well at Royal Ascot and giving the impression 6f is his game. He ran well behind the top-class Earthlight in France, but was still firmly put in his place and that’s enough to put me off at 12/1 in such a competitive race. Price is everything, and the one I think is too big at 20/1 is ROYAL COMMANDO for sprint king Charlie Hills, who saddled Muhaarar to win this a few years back. Luckless in traffic on his previous start when well beaten by Threat at Goodwood, Hills still speaks very highly of him and he’s got plenty of Group One entries to back that up. He looks capable of outrunning those odds and you can get four places each-way.

1pt each-way Royal Commando @20/1, 15:00 York, Friday (1-4, 1/5 various)

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