Doncaster St Leger Festival 2017 – Day 1 – Scarborough Stakes

The 4 four-day Doncaster St Leger Meeting kicks-off this Wednesday and it’s a fixture that gathers pace as the week goes on. This is evident as the ITV Racing cameras are not even there for the opening day, but from Thursday will be showing four of the races LIVE each day with the fixture climaxing on Saturday with the St Leger – the oldest of the five English Classics!

That said, on Wednesday it’s not to say there is nothing to get stuck into as the Listed Scarbrough Stakes, run over the flying 5 furlongs, is certainly a race to have on your radar.

There are plenty of past trends and stats to apply to the contest (see below) that will narrow down the runners and at least highlight the best profile of horses to look for based on the last 15 renewals.

So, let’s crack on…………………

3:20 – Pepsi Max Scarbrough Stakes (Listed Race) – 5f

Scarbrough Stakes – Big Race Stats & Trends

15/15 – Had won over 5f or 6f before
14/15 – Didn’t win last time out
12/15 – Had won over 5f before
13/15  – Returned 8/1 or shorter in the betting
13/15 – Drawn in stalls 8 or lower
10/15 – Aged 4, 5 or 6 years-old
10/15 – Winning distance 1 length or less
9/15 – Had won a Listed or Group race before
8/15 – Had won 5 or more times before
9/15 – Drawn in stalls 4 to 8 (inc)
8/15 – Had 6 or more runs that season
8/15 – Finished in the top 3 last time out
8/15 – Had run at Doncaster before
4/15 – Winning favourites
3/15 – Ridden by Frankie Dettori
2/15 – Ridden by Jamie Spencer
2/15 – Won by previous winners of the race
2/15 – Trained by the Richard Hannon yard

The average price of the winner in the last 10 runnings is 5/1

Note: the 2006 renewal was staged at York

It’s a shame only six runners head to post for the 2017 renewal, but we’ve several familiar faces that have run in this race before.

Ok, we’ve not got any past winners, but we do have last year’s second – THESME – running. Trained by Nigel Tinkler this 5-year-old is officially rated 9lbs lower this time around and also carries 2lbs less than 12 months ago.

He went down by just ¾ of a length in 2016 and despite having not won since August 2015 he’s been contesting some decent sprints and not been doing badly. Add in that he also heads here in decent order after a third (of 20) at York in a high-class handicap over 5 ½ furlongs then everything looks set for another big effort so he gets the call here.

The Tinkler camp has also booked the services of a certain Frankie Dettori, who was on last time too. The pocket Italian’s only two rides on this horse have resulted in a second and a third, plus he’s no stranger to winning this prize after landing the race three times in the last 15 years.

On the official ratings he’s currently on a mark of 100 and despite this being 9lbs adrift of Final Venture and 4lbs behind Encore D’Or, the Tinkler horse receives 8lbs off Final Venture and 5lbs from Encore. Draw 6 looks fine too, providing the ground doesn’t get much softer, the underfoot conditions should be perfect, having won on good-to-soft.

Of the rest, the Robert Cowell-trained Encore D’Or is sure to be popular with Ryan Moore booked to ride, but his best form has been on quicker ground so that would be a concern for backers, while he’s yet to race here at the track.

The Paul Midgley yard run two. Final Venture is the highest-rated in the field, but as a result, has 10-0 to carry. A recent second to the classy Take Cover in the Beverley Bullet was a solid effort and with winning form on soft ground then conditions look ideal. The Midgely yard also runs Desert Law and being the only proven course and distance winner in the field then he also commands respect. This 9-year-old was last seen running sixth in the Beverley Bullet last time, so does has a bit to find with his stablemate – Final Venture – on that running.

The final two runners also come from the same stable as Clive Cox runs Go On Go On Go On, who was 7th in this race 12 months ago, plus the unexposed Razzmatazz, who has only had three career runs. Of the two the last-named looks the more interesting with connections clearly feeling she’s up to this step up in grade after only winning a maiden last time. She sprung a 50/1 surprise that day but gets weight from all the others so could go well at a fair price, but it’s worth pointing out she’s untried on ground this soft.

Scarbrough Stakes – Recent Winners

2016     Priceless                           4/1
2015     Cotai Glory                       11/4 (fav)
2014     Mecca’s Angel                  7/1
2013     Justineo                            4/1 (jfav)
2012     Sole Power                        5/2 (fav)
2011  Humidor                               14/1
2010 Prohibit                                 9/2
2009 Strike The Deal                   9/2
2008 Galeota                                 3/1
2007 Galeota                                  5/1
2006 Celtic Mill                            8/1
2005 Majestic Missile                13/8 (fav)
2004 Celtic Mill                           15/2
2003 Dubaian Gift                      16/1
2002 Bishops Court                   100/30

Andy Newton

Andy is a member of the Horse Writers’ Association and an established horse racing expert and tipster. He's been featured in Gambling Online magazine, and as an expert in the Official Wetherbys Cheltenham Festival betting guide since 2011 as well as other leading publications . Andy also has regular columns on, and and specializes in big race trends and stats.


    1. Hi Daniel, The above race was today. Not sure what you mean about Saturday? Let us know and we can be of more help! Cheers, Eddie

Back to top button