Take Cover makes a welcome return to Beverley on Tuesday evening when he runs in the British EBF Conditions Stakes (7.30).
The popular 11-year-old sprinter has his first start at the East Yorkshire circuit since he brilliantly won the Listed Beverley Bullet last September. David Griffiths’ dual Group Two winner takes on four rivals in a compelling renewal of the £14,000 five-furlong dash. And though Take Cover must concede weight to the field, his trainer is expecting big things.
The South Yorkshire handler said: “We were thinking of going to Ireland with him (Midsummer Sprint Stakes at Naas), but this race fits in better. He’s got a lot of weight, but the ground will be ideal and it looks tailor-made for him. He’s the class horse in the race and shouldn’t really be getting beat. He ran well at Haydock, but his work after that has been really good. He’s getting back to where he was last year and he’s lost that bit of weight that he needed to. He’s totally where he needs to be.”
Take Cover takes on two former winners of the British EBF Conditions Stakes in Line Of Reason and Judicial. Line Of Reason broke Beverley’s five-furlong course record when he claimed victory in 2016, but Judicial eclipsed that feat 12 months ago when he became the first horse to navigate the circuit in under a minute.
Judicial has been in good form this season, having finished a neck second to Mabs Cross in the Palace House Stakes at Newmarket in May.
Julie Camacho’s six-year-old then had no luck whatsoever in a Listed race at Haydock on June 9.
Steve Brown, Camacho’s assistant trainer and husband, said: “The Palace House was a nice start, but it was disappointing he couldn’t back that up, through no fault of his own, at Haydock. We’ve always thought he could be a Group winner and hopefully he’ll get the chance to show that this season. He’s very quick and very progressive.”
El Astronaute, who is now rated 103 after a string of super performances this season, also lines up for the John Quinn team, while David Barron’s Robot Boy completes the Beverley quintet. The going at Beverley is good following 12 millimetres of rain on Saturday, with the six-race card due to start at 6.30pm.