In the feature Group 1 Nassau Stakes over almost 1m 2f at Glorious Goodwood on Thursday (15:35), Mehdaayih looks well worth a wager at 7/2 with Betway now dropping back in trip.
This three-year-old Frankel filly is trained by red-hot handler John Gosden and the form of her juvenile mile maiden win at Yarmouth has worked out nicely. Mehdaayih chinned Fanny Logan in the final strides to score by a neck.
The runner-up has since landed a competitive Listed affair at York, while the third filly home – the re-opposing Maqsad – ran out an impressive winner of the Pretty Polly at Newmarket.
After bolting up in an all-weather handicap over this trip on reappearance, Mehdaayih followed-up with victory in the Cheshire Oaks.
She got hampered two out but still found her way to the front down the outside, quickening clear for a 4 1/2 lengths victory.
Mehdaayih punched her ticket to The Oaks with that, yet was repeatedly denied a clear run at Epsom.
As she was beaten just over six lengths but hampered time and again, it was a great effort in the circumstances.
She even managed to finish ahead of old rival Maqsad in the fillies’ Classic. Mehdaayih has since comfortably resumed winning ways with a two-length victory in a Saint-Cloud Group 2 over 1m 4f.
As she stays further, but the drop back in trip holds no fears, and with Frankie Dettori once again on board, Mehdaayih looks the value bet to win the Nassau Stakes this year.
Hermosa sets standard but has to prove stamina
The dangers and betting are headed by dual Guineas heroine Hermosa. Like Gosden, trainer Aidan O’Brien has won this race four times before and now steps this Galileo filly up in trip.
Hermosa has 4lb and upwards in hand on the field on adjusted ratings, and made all to win the Classics at Newmarket and The Curragh.
She was then sent off an even-money favourite for the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot, but tapped for toe by French filly Watch Me.
Unlike most of her rivals, this distance is an unknown with Hermosa. It looks well within her compass to get the extra couple of furlongs, however, and she brings leading form claims into the Nassau Stakes.
That means Hermosa is entitled to be 2/1 favourite with William Hill. She commands a ton of respect, but this is more competitive than official figures suggest and it may pay to take her on this time.
There were no excuses for Hermosa’s defeat at Royal Ascot. She was punted as though defeat was out of the question and, while there’s nothing to fear from re-opposing stable companion Just Wonderful, at least that one has tried the trip.
While it would be no surprise to see Hermosa prove her stamina, the betting value lies elsewhere. She may well resume winning ways, but is opposed at the odds on offer.
Channel solid each-way value in Nassau Stakes
Progressive and lightly-raced French raider Channel is closest to Hermosa on adjusted ratings, so looks a solid each-way alternative at 7/1 with Betfred.
This daughter of Nathaniel has progressed at a rate of knots and landed the Group 1 Prix de Diane last time out. That was her first start in group company after winning a couple of minor races.
Channel held on in really game fashion for a head victory at Chantilly, so the slight drop back in trip looks in her favour.
Three-year-olds have a superb recent record in the Nassau Stakes, winning five of the last six renewals.
With Channel open to the most progress of the entire field, there still looks to be plenty more to come from her. If there is one negative, then it’s the form of her stable.
The aforementioned Maqsad was seriously impressive when bolting up in the Pretty Polly, but then failed to stay The Oaks trip. That means going back down in distance is a clear plus for William Haggas’ filly.
She has plenty to find with Mehdaayih though, and there’s less each-way value in odds of 7/1 at 888Sport than Channel.
The four older fillies and mares concede 8lb weight-for-age in the Nassau Stakes, and that makes it hard to fancy any of them.
More is needed from Sir Michael Stoute trained pair Rawdaa and Sun Maiden off these terms despite their handler’s fine record in the race.
Japanese raider Deidre and Nyaleti are rank outsiders, so the recent trend of three-year-old winners looks set to continue. Mehdaayih appeals most of those, ahead of Hermosa.