The Group 3 Summer Stakes over 6f for fillies and mares heads a seven-race card at York on Friday (15:15).
Shades Of Blue looks a bit of value at 11/2 with 888Sport to go one better than when runner-up at the Dante Festival here in May.
Trained by Clive Cox, this Kodiac filly has a progressive profile and created a real impression when winning an Ascot maiden on racecourse debut last season. Shades Of Blue won going away from Queen Of Bermuda.
The runner-up came out and landed her next two starts, and later improved to take a Listed affair in France and then a Group 3 at Ayr.
Shades Of Blue then ran a massive race when beaten a head and third in the Group 2 Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Although chinned in the last 50 yards, she kept on battling under real pressure. The ninth filly home, Kurious, who was a couple of lengths behind Shades Of Blue has come out this season and won Listed and Group 3 sprints at Sandown.
That was it for her juvenile campaign, so she was entitled to need the run after 310 days off the track when third on reappearance at Doncaster.
Shades Of Blue just lost second close home behind the re-opposing Archer’s Dream, but now meets her on 7lb better terms with just over a length to find.
She was then far from disgraced when beaten a short-head by Garrus in the Listed 5f Westow Stakes here. Shades Of Blue was just defeated in the dying strides and the winner has since chased home Kurious in that Group 3.
There was a deserved big race success for Shades Of Blue last time out in another Listed event over in France.
Archer’s Dream feared in Summer Stakes
Hollie Doyle timed her run to perfection as she got up to lead on the line and be on the right end of a narrow winning margin.
Shades Of Blue is now rated 3lb superior to Archer’s Dream on official figures at a mark of 103. As she also gets 6lb weight-for-age from the older fillies and mares, race terms are in her favour.
That makes Shades Of Blue well worth another crack over this extra furlong and on the upgrade. She is taken over old rival Archer’s Dream who puts an unbeaten record on the line.
Trained by James Fanshawe, the Dream Ahead filly has seen the form of her first two victories franked.
The runner-up at Doncaster, Tapisserie, has come out and won two of her next three outings including a Listed event at Carlisle.
After that winning debut, Archer’s Dream followed-up at Yarmouth where she travelled strongly throughout for an easy 4 1/2 lengths success.
It only took a shake of the reins for her to put this race to bed. Philipine Cobra, who chased Archer’s Dream home, won her next two starts, so again the form looks good.
Despite getting a whopping 17lb from Snazzy Jazzy last time out, she then dead-heated when stepped up into Listed company for the Cathedral Stakes at Salisbury.
Archer’s Dream is the least exposed in the 17-runner Summer Stakes line-up and respected. She clearly goes well for jockey George Wood, who has partnered her on all three previous occasions.
There could be even more to come and an official BHA rating of 100 may underestimate Archer’s Dream. At 4/1 with Betway, she tackles a big field for the first time and is opposed based on a lack of experience in this situation alone.
Island Of Life and Royal Intervention each-way value
A case can be made for a few hitting the frame here. Island Of Life appeals more than most from the older fillies and mares for in-form trainer William Haggas.
This five-year-old daughter of Dubawi is arguably a much better animal on the all-weather and has run some solid races in defeat.
They include when beaten a couple of lengths and fifth to last year’s 1000 Guineas heroine Billesdon Brook in a Listed affair at Chelmsford, and a fine third to Invincible Army in the Group 3 Chipchase Stakes at Newcastle.
Island Of Life was nearest at the finish in the latter. She also has the same win and place ratio of 78 per cent on turf as the all-weather.
Odds of 9/1 with Unibet are thus well worth considering each-way for Island Of Life. Royal Intervention also has claims of making the frame on the pick of her form.
Trained by Ed Walker, this three-year-old Exceed And Excel filly found Group 1 company too hot when fifth in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot. Prior to that, however, she ran some cracking races in defeat.
After winning her second start as a juvenile in Listed company at Newmarket, Royal Intervention chased home Angel’s Hideaway in a Group 3 at Ascot.
She then had 278 days off the track and needed the run when fourth on reappearance to the re-opposing Issan Queen.
Royal Intervention was next just a neck behind Calyx in third in the Group 2 Sandy Lane Stakes.
He was one of the most exciting juvenile colts last season and the winner, Hello Youmzain, confirmed the form in the Commonwealth Cup.
This is much easier, so – at 14/1 with BetVictor – Royal Intervention could be involved in the finish of the Summer Stakes.