Champions Sprint Stakes tips – Shalaa for one last hoorah at 11/2

Champions Sprint Stakes tips – Shalaa for one last hoorah at 11/2


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Betting Tip: Shalaa @ 11/2 with williamhill

A field of 14 will go to post for the Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes over 6f, due off 2.00pm.

Who’s favourite?
Speedy filly Quiet Reflection is going for her third Group 1 of the year and her high cruising speed and ability to quicken make her the one they all have to beat. Her only defeat in five runs this year came in the Group 1 July Cup at Newmarket where she had to settle for third behind Limato and Seudois on ground quicker than ideal. She bounced back nicely after an eight week break at Haydock last month (soft) with a near two-length gap back to the reopposing The Tin Man and she is proven over track and trip having landed the Commonwealth Cup at the royal meeting (good to soft). Now for the negatives. While she has won on the forecast ‘good’ ground, she’s undeniably better with some cut and her stable has been badly out of sorts of late, with coughing effecting some inmates.

Who’s next best?

The aforementioned The Tin Man could finish closer to the favourite having been slow away at Haydock and looked a little uncomfortable on the soft ground. He’s never won above Group 3 level, though, and could only finish fourth in last year’s renewal.

A bigger threat to the favourite then may come from Shalaa, who was one of last season’s top juveniles, signing off with a Group 1 success in the Middle Park, and made a winning return over course and distance two weeks ago when looking like the race would bring him on. Trainer John Gosden eased any concerns over the bounce factor (horses can run poorly on their second quick run back after a layoff) with an upbeat bulletin this week, saying: ‘The run has put him right. He probably went into that 80 per cent fit but is now exactly where we want him.” Frankie Dettori rides.

And the rest?
Twilight Son won the Diamond Jubilee over track and trip in June (good to soft), but was well beaten on faster ground at Newmarket on his next start. That would be the worry here as, unless the forecast is wrong, he may again find conditions a tad too quick. He will do well to better last year’s second.

Mecca’s Angel is stepping up to 6f for only the second time (well beaten on her first try) and has looked best over York’s 5f. I can’t have her here. Librisa Breeze on the other hand is dropping back to 6f having won a couple of big 7f handicaps at this track this season. As a strong traveller he’s definitely worth a try over shorter but whether he’s up to Group 1 standard, I don’t know.

Brando and Signs Of Blessing head the remainder but it’ll be a surprise if the winner doesn’t come from those already mentioned.

What’s the verdict?

Three-year-olds filled the first five places 12 months ago, perhaps as a result to their sprinting programme, and I’m keen to side with one from the Classic generation this time around. With doubts over Quiet Reflection (ground / stable form), the one to be on is SHALAA, who is likely having his last run before going to stud (so connections will be hoping for a big run) and appears to have retained all his ability.

Back Shalaa @ 11/2 William Hill

Betting Tip: Shalaa @ 11/2 with williamhill

All odds were correct at time of posting.

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