Horse racing: Golfer Westwood to hole an Ascot winner with Hoof It

Lee Sobot.
Lee Sobot.
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It’s the final day of Royal Ascot tomorrow and quite simply if you land the winner of the Wokingham you’re laughing with the betting going 7-1 the field (4.25pm).

Hoof It leads that market and a justified favourite he most definitely is – here’s hoping Kieren Fallon can drive him home to cap a memorable last day.

Owned by golfing ace Lee Westwood, Hoof It has long been highly regarded by the Michael Easterby stable with the horse ending last season with a decent victory in a competitive five-furlong handicap at Doncaster.

However, even after that victory, Westwood insisted his charge would be a better horse the following year and that looks like being very much the case judged on his seasonal re-appearance success at York.

Hoof It travelled like a dream that day before wrapping up the contest with much authority and the form looks rock solid with the very smart but frustrating Horseradish in second followed by the quickly-improving Our Jonathan in third.

Hoof It has now gone up 6lbs in the weights but he looks Group class and while the draw is always a nightmare in the Wokingham, being berthed in stall 13 of 31 will give Fallon options of where to go.

All ground seems to come alike to Hoof It and while naturally in a 30-runner sprint handicap there are dangers aplenty – Pastoral Player and Addictive Dream mostly feared – 7-1 on Hoof It looks very fair indeed.

Let’s hope he can make amends for our big-priced Tuesday nap Stonefield Flyer hitting the crossbar in coming second at 16-1!

It certainly looks like being a fine final day tomorrow and there is no doubt that most people’s “banker” of the day will be Await The Dawn for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore in the Hardwicke Stakes at 3.05pm.

And, while the same team caused burnt fingers with so-called certainty So You Think on Wednesday, Await The Dawn ought to collect, hopefully at a shade of odds against.

To start with Await The Dawn is rated four pounds superior to all of his rivals yet races off level weights so in theory that is at least a length or so in the bag already.

But the confidence in his chance is based mainly on the manor of his victory in the Huxley Stakes at Chester in which he slammed his field by four and a half lengths, looking every inch a Group One horse in the making.

Entries in the Coral-Eclipse, King George and Irish Champion Stakes confirm that theory and as long as the tactics aren’t messed up, as was the case on Wednesday, this horse looks a good thing tomorrow with Moore doing the steering.

And Moore is also the man who can be responsible for delivering on our third final-day fancy – Modun in the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes Handicap at 5pm.

Yet again this looks a case of a Group horse in a handicap with Modun entered in the Irish St Leger yet getting in this contest from a mark of 99 – a mark he is surely better than.

As yet, the lightly-raced four- year-old has only had three runs – winning two and being narrowly beaten on the all-weather last year – but this big, robust type was always going to be better as a four-year-old and looked the real deal when skating up at Newbury last time by four lengths.

The handicapper has taken evasive action in hiking Modun up 15lbs but he’s probably lucky to be running in a handicap full stop and we saw Moore and Sir Michael Stoute strike twice at York last weekend with Confront and Sea Moon – two blatant Group horses in handicaps.

Expect the same again with Modun. Best of luck and have a great weekend.

Trainer Jessica Harrington watches Our Dukeat her Commonstown Stables in Moone, Ireland. PIC: Niall Carson/PA Wire

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