Trainer Marco Botti avoided the temptation of running ATALIS BAY (Sandown, 2.15) at Royal Ascot next week and that wise decision can pay off with victory in the Coral Scurry Stakes.
Andrea Atzeni’s mount had decent form as a two-year-old but he has taken a significant step forward this season.
He returned with success in a Nottingham handicap when he had one of today’s rivals Warrior Brave, who has won since but is worse off at the weights, two lengths behind him.
Last time out in a five-furlong Listed contest at York, Atalis Bay was no match for Winter Power and was beaten three lengths.
But that stark form line has to be put into context. Winter Power is a leading contender for the King’s Stand Stakes at the Royal meeting on Tuesday and there will be nothing of that calibre in line-up here. Atalis Bay also pulled a gaping five lengths clear of the third horse at York.
Giving his runner a vote of confidence, Botti (above) said: ‘Atalis Bay is in great form and this is the race we have waited for since he was second up at York.
‘He is drawn in the middle in four and he should have his conditions as he wants fast ground. He has plenty in his favour.
‘We had the option of going to Royal Ascot but he would have been high enough in the handicap against a full field.’
Warrior Brave is also improving so should put up another decent show while Atalis Bay also has to see off two useful Irish challengers.
Queens Carriage has won her last three starts, two at the all-weather Dundalk circuit and last time out at Fairyhouse over six furlongs.
She also finished just in front of Steel Bull when they were both unplaced at Dundalk in October.
Steel Bull has been to Britain twice before, winning the Molecomb Stakes at Glorious Goodwood before finishing fifth to Ubettabelieveit in the Flying Childers Stakes at Doncaster last season.
The best bet of the day could be ADMIRALITY (York, nap, 2.35), who has plenty going for him over a course and distance that has brought out the best of him in the past.