Epsom preview: Nyaleti the value punt in Princess ElizabethPublished on: May 31, 2019Author: David Metcalf
The first of two Group 3 contests to take place on Derby day at Epsom this Saturday is the Princess Elizabeth Stakes (14:35), and Nyaleti looks decent value at 7/2 with Paddy Power to land the spoils in the 1m contest.
This Mark Johnston trained four-year-old filly scored twice last season landing a Listed affair at Goodwood, before following-up in good style in the Group 2 German 1000 Guineas when drawing readily clear to beat Malakeh by 4 1/4 lengths.
Nyaleti was then far from disgraced when fourth to Jessica Harrington’s star filly Alpha Centauri in the Group 1 Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket or when beaten just 1 1/4 lengths into fifth behind Beat The Bank in the Group 2 Celebration Mile at Goodwood.
The daughter of Arch went on to round off the campaign with a cracking neck second to God Given in a Group 1 in Italy, and there was lots to like about her seasonal reappearance at Newmarket when a length second of five to Worth Waiting in the Group 2 Dahlia Stakes.
Nyaleti raced at the head of affairs and, after being short of room two from home, rallied strongly when headed to go down by just a length.
She finished 3 1/2 lengths in front of the fourth home Veracious and now meets that one on 3lb better terms, so there is no reason why she should not confirm the form with the re-opposing rival.
Although not so good last time out when fourth to Lah Ti Dar in a Group 2 at York, that race may have come too quickly and Nayleti appeals the the type to bounce back.
In relation to Veracious, she looks overpriced at the odds on offer if doing just that.
Veracious odds unappealing
The aforementioned Veracious somewhat surprisingly heads the betting at a top-price 2/1 with Unibet.
There were no excuses for this Sir Michael Stoute trained four-year-old daughter of Frankel when a well-beaten fourth in the Dahlia Stakes, when sent off a heavily-backed favourite, and that was not the first time that she had failed to live up to expectations.
A bounce back is now called for, but on the pick of her form last season there is no doubt that Veracious is a big player in this for her in-form handler.
She ran well first time-up when a 7 3/4 lengths third of 12 to Alpha Centauri in the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot, and backed that up with a solid two-length third to Wild Illusion in a Group 1 at Goodwood.
Veracious then took advantage of a drop into Group 3 company to notch a second career success when beating Awesometank by a cosy length at Sandown.
The form of those races read well in relation to this, but giving 3lb to Nyaleti who is officially rated 1lb her superior is a big ask. So, at the odds on offer, she looks worth taking on.
Zaaki taken to deliver in Diomed
Zaaki posted a career-best performance when scoring on seasonal reappearance and looks a worthy favourite at 13/8 with Betfred to follow-up in the other Group 3, the 1m Diomed Stakes (15:10).
That run came in an eight-runner Listed contest at Ascot where the Stoute trained four-year-old beat Barney Roy by a neck.
After forfeiting ground when slowly away, Zaaki made good headway two from home before taking up the running a furlong out and staying on strongly.
It was a terrific effort given how the race panned out, and Barney Roy is a top class performer who since come out and won a Listed contest at Longchamp in France in impressive fashion, so that gives the form a rock solid look.
That is the best on offer in this seven-runner line-up. Zaaki is lightly-raced for his age and may well have even more to offer.
With Ryan Moore in the saddle and the stable operating at a strike rate of 25 per cent in the last 14 days at the time of writing, there is simply nothing not to like about his chances in this.
If Zaaki fails to live up to expectations, then Bye Bye Hong Kong looks the obvious one to take advantage.
This Andrew Balding trained three-year-old, an 11/4 shot with Bethard, has show improved form in each of his seven starts and comes into the race having won both his starts this season.
In the last of those at Windsor, he made all and found plenty to beat Oh This Is Us by half-a-length in a four-runner Listed contest.
He is clearly going the right way and if allowed to dominate again could prove hard to peg back.
Sotto Sizzler weighted to go in again
Soto Sizzler scored in fine style last time out and looks worth siding with at 7/2 with Ladbrokes to make light of a rise in the weights and follow-up in the 1m 4f Investec Out Of The Ordinary Handicap (17:15).
This William Knight trained four-year-old has only had nine starts and got off the mark last August at Goodwood when landing a competitive 12-runner class 2 contest over 1m 4f off a mark of 79.
After being held-up at the rear he made steady headway two from home and stayed on well inside the final furlong to get up close home at bear Corgi by a length in a race that has thrown-up subsequent winners.
Soto Sizzler got put up to 85 for that taking success but failed to sparkle in two subsequent outings in class 2 company at Haydock and Newmarket.
However, there was lots to like about his comeback run at Kempton last following 169 days on the sidelines when a not knocked about 5 1/4 lengths fifth of 16 to Forbidden Planet in a class 2 over an inadequate 1m 3f.
Soto Sizzler then duly built on that promising effort to run out an impressive winner over course and distance.
The son of Mastercraftsman travelled ominously well throughout before quickening clear inside the last to readily beat Eddystone Rock, a winner since, by 3 1/4 lengths.
It was a most taking display which suggested Soto Sizzler needed keeping onside and the assessor has been very kind in raising him just 5lb for it.
He still looks ahead of his revised mark of 88, so with the stable among the winners of late makes plenty of appeal at the odds on offer.