Friday Doncaster NAP
3:00 Doncaster Tips
Trueshan – 2pt Win – 7/2 (Bet365 & William Hill)
My NAP today will be a controversial one but it is Trueshan in the Doncaster Cup.
Nobody can debate that on their best day, Trueshan is the best horse in this race. Some of his performances have been incredible and arguably, his best run ever was the Northumberland Plate, when he gave away stacks of weight and a beating to his rivals, achieving a RPR of 126 in the process.
Many will be saying that Trueshan is regressive now or even going as far as saying that he is “finished”. However, I am not quite sure that Trueshan is done yet. After that Newcastle run, he was third at Goodwood behind Kyprios and Stradivarius and it was an extremely respectable run. Coltrane was 3.25 lengths behind in 4th. Trueshan and Coltrane then battled again in last year’s running of this race with Coltrane prevailing by a neck. Trueshan did plenty wrong that day though as he raced freely, carried his head to one side and wandered around. The trainer felt perhaps he was not letting himself down, having run on faster ground than ideal at Goodwood. It was certainly a disappointment on the day given he was sent off 2/9F but looking at what Coltrane has achieved since and considering, how much Trueshan did wrong, it is a respectable performance. Trueshan then managed to turn the form around and beat Coltrane by a head in the Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot.
After a 179-day break, Trueshan returned at Nottingham in April of this year. He was sent off 4/9F but failed to beat Rajinksy which was very disappointing. Again, connections were scratching their heads as to why. Perhaps he was mentally marked from his hard runs, maybe he was not quite fit enough etc. Before jumping to any conclusions or making any rash decisions, they said they would hold their judgement until his next race which would tell them a lot. That run came in the Sagaro Stakes at Ascot and it was another disappointing one. Coltrane won with Trueshan 7 lengths behind in 4th. Again, it was hard to find an excuse albeit it was not ideal that Hollie had to jump to the front five furlongs from home as she was unhappy with the pace they were going. Perhaps that just hampered Trueshan’s finish and set the race up for the others.
Enough looking back though… moving on to today’s race, Trueshan returns after being off the track since that Ascot run in May. He has also had a wind surgery since which is interesting, if his wind had been hampering him and that is now sorted, he could return with a bang… However, you could equally argue it is out of desperation at this stage! A huge plus for Trueshan is that the ground is soft, which plays into his hands for a change. He has 2 wins and 2 seconds from 6 runs on Soft with a peak RPR of 122. One of those defeats on Soft was also over 1m, which can be ignored. I think the horse’s seasons coming into this race could also play a part here. Trueshan is returning fresh and has won four times when doing so. In comparison, Coltrane is having his 3rd run in circa 6 weeks, which can be a big ask for these stayers. Sweet William is also in a similar position with his penultimate run also coming on Heavy ground and then last time being in a tough handicap (The Ebor). The same third run in six weeks can also be said for the other two rivals today. So, whereas these horses may have had enough by now, Trueshan is coming here fresh as a daisy. The final aspect to consider as well is that Coltrane has to give away a 3lb penalty today… that will be extremely hard to do if Trueshan returns to form.
Discussing this with a friend this morning, he summed it up well. Trueshan’s race today is against himself as if he does not turn up at his best, any of these could beat him. However, on the flip side, I feel if he does turn up, he could beat any of these. With so much in his favour today (the freshness, the penalty carried by Coltrane, the ground etc), I am taking that chance that he will bounce back to his best today. Hopefully today sees him get back on track and then it is all roads to Ascot for a crack at a 4th successive win in the Champions Long Distance Cup!
Come on Trueshan..!
Total Outlay – 2 points.