In the first of his exclusive columns throughout Chester Races, the champion Flat jockey reveals how to cope with the 'very unique track'
Galileo Gold did really well in the 2000 Guineas and showed what a good horse he is. Aidan O’Brien’s horse obviously didn’t run his race, but it was an impressive performance.
They have a tough decision now whether to go for the Derby or keep him at a mile. There’s obviously only one Derby, but you also don’t want to spoil their career for one race. There are plenty of races at a mile for him.
Minding was very good in the 1000 Guineas, as were the other two O’Brien fillies. They could all play a hand in the Oaks next month.
I was really pleased with Arabian Queen in the Dahlia Stakes. She ran a good race, but just got a bit tired and was touched off by a filly who had already had a run.
We’re not sure where she goes next. She has a few options, but it was good to get her started again.
What you need at Chester
Chester’s a very unique track and you need a well-balanced and sharp horse to cope with the corners.
Everyone always goes on about the draw, but it is so important there. You’re turning all the time, you’re only ever really in a straight line for two furlongs max.
There’s always a great atmosphere and it’s probably more enjoyable to watch than ride!
I can’t think of many courses like it, the only one is perhaps Happy Valley in Hong Kong but that’s right-handed.
Chester Wednesday rides
I’ve got three rides on the Roodee for the first day.
Awesome Allan goes in the Lily Agnes (2.10pm) and he’s been unlucky with the draw.
He ran fairly well at Windsor last time, but it’s going to be hard to reverse the form with Copper Knight who finished a place in front of him that day.
It’s never easy when you’re drawn out wide on the five-furlong course so we just have to hope for some luck from stall eight.
Snap Shots is another with a bad draw in the five-furlong handicap (3.45pm).
He’s coming out of stall 11 and you’d have to think that Tom Dascombe’s other runner Roudee will have a better chance than mine from stall one. It’s Chester, though, so you never know!
My final ride is on So Celebre in the last (5.25pm). He’s not a world beater, but he’s a nice horse and this is a competitive little race.
Hopefully the step up in trip to a mile and a half will suit on his handicap debut.
Betway Chester Cup
Unfortunately I don’t have a ride in this year’s Betway Chester Cup.
It’s always a very hard race to win and you need your fair share of luck.
Roger Varian’s Steve Rogers is progressive and has a nice draw in stall three so he goes there with a favourite’s chance and will be hard to beat.