Turf Talk: Popular filly Aetna can sign York off in style

Trainer Michael Easterby with Pat Cosgrave.
Trainer Michael Easterby with Pat Cosgrave.
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MICHAEL Easterby’s Aetna can help us end York’s season in style with a popular victory in tomorrow’s Coral Sprint Trophy (3.30pm).

At first glance, odds of 9-2 favourite look skinny about Aetna who will face a plethora of rivals over six furlongs of the York turf.

But Aetna deserves her place as a solid favourite and could be several pounds well-in based on her latest third in a decent handicap at Newmarket.

Aetna lost valuable ground when first stumbling and then being switched behind Secret Hint last time and the general feeling is she’d have won with better luck in running. That would have meant a hefty rise in the weights but instead Aetna has gone up just 1lb and this mud lover will be even better on York’s soft terrain than on good ground at HQ last time.

Aetna also has winning course form at York – plus she’s open to improvement – meaning 9-2 is probably quite generous.

Polybius is still entered in the Group Two British Champions Sprint Stakes so he’s a big danger at 10s while there’s a big word for David Barron’s Indy in York’s opener (1.50pm).

But the day’s other big betting race is Newmarket’s Cesarewitch (3.50pm) and everything points to a huge run from Irish raider Quick Jack – the 13-2 favourite. This consistent improver has been laid out for the race by Tony Martin – one of the shrewdest trainers in the game. Nearly Caught is also well fancied for Hugie Morrison but let’s hope two obvious nice priced winners in Quick Jack and Aetna are staring us in the face.

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

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