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ITV Racing Tips: Can Highest Ground reach a new peak in the Dante?

| 08.07.2020

There’s a star-studded card to enjoy on ITV4 this Thursday with no fewer than five Group races to get stuck into, including the July Stakes from Newmarket and the rescheduled Dante at York.

Ed Chamberlin and co. are on hand to bring us seven renewals in total, and we’ve previewed the three feature contests in our ITV Racing Tips.


Better late than never. That’s our assessment of this year’s Dante Stakes. The 1m 2½f contest may be taking place after the Derby rather than before, but it’s still attracted a decent enough field, which is headed by Highest Ground.

Sir Michael Stoute opted to skip last weekend’s classic with his unbeaten three-year-old in favour of an easier assignment on the Knavesmire where his inmate can bowl along without the unpredictability of undulating ground.

The Frankel colt looked a classy type when dispatching the race-fit and highly fancied Waldkonig on his seasonal reappearance over this trip at Haydock, and on that evidence, he’ll take all the beating here.

Aidan O’Brien saddles the main danger in Cormorant, who beat subsequent Royal Ascot winner Russian Emperor last time out, while Al Madhar is two from two and has beaten some nice sorts in both of his starts so far.


Qaader boasts the standout form claims off the back of his second-placed finish behind 150/1 shot Nando Parrado in the Coventry Stakes, but in a hot renewal of this 6f dash, it could be Tactical or Swiss Ace who comes out on top.

The former won the Windsor Castle with a bit in hand and should appreciate the extra furlong on offer here, while the latter doesn’t boast the same level of form as some of these but did produce an eye-catching debut at Tipperary.

The Ballydoyle hopeful made all that day to score by over 2l and is bred to enjoy this trip. There’s every chance he’ll keep on progressing for a trainer who won this race 12 months ago. Yazaman should not be discounted either.


Favourites tend to disappoint in the Princess of Wales’s Stakes, so it could be worth keeping an eye on which one of Enbihaar, Alounak and Old Persian leads the market when the runners go to post for this 1m 4f contest.

All three have genuine claims, with Old Persian the most obvious candidate based on his winning efforts in Group 1 and 2 company at Meydan and Woodbine in 2019. He’ll strip fitter for a spin in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud too.

Enbihaar’s defeat of Manuela De Vega in the Lillie Langtry at Goodwood last term looks strong with the runner-up subsequently finishing ahead of Hardwicke Stakes winner Fanny Logan on her reappearance at Haydock.

Alounak was second to the aforementioned Fanny Logan in that race at Royal Ascot and can also put up a challenge, while Dame Malliot was a Group 2 winner last season before bombing out in the Park Hill behind Enbihaar.

Hollie Doyle’s mount is capable of much better and would keep up the trend of four-year-old winners in this race.


13:50 Newmarket – Sir Henry Cecil Stakes (Listed)

14:05 York – Marygate Fillies’ Stakes (Listed)

14:25 Newmarket – Bahrain Trophy Stakes (Group 3)

14:40 York – Musidora Stakes (Group 3)

15:00 Newmarket – July Stakes (Group 2)

15:15 York – The Dante (Group 2)

15:35 Newmarket – Class 2 Handicap

16:10 Newmarket – Princess of Wales’s Tattersalls Stakes (Group 2)

View the latest Horse Racing odds

All odds and markets correct as of date of publication



Nick Murphy

Nick is a graduate of the UEA where he doubled up as the sports editor of the student newspaper. He supports Dagenham & Redbridge and previously edited the matchday programme at Victoria Road. Darts and Horse Racing are among his other favourite sports.