Friday August 25

Midnight Cowboy, who has thrived since going over fences, his tally being 3-5 after switching to chasing, maintained Barbury’s good recent strike-rate when winning at Stratford yesterday, looking fresh and well after his break and scoring impressively under Wayne Hutchinson.

Meanwhile, we revert to the Flat at Goodwood today, where Beringer, impressive at Salisbury, will appreciate the easy ground when he returns to turf after a disappointing run on the polytrack at Chelmsford, and is joined on the trip down there by Kozier, who could never get competitive in a slow-run race on the tapeta at Wolverhampton last time but will improve for that, his first race for 11 months.

Just In Time, who ran well in his first handicap and on his first run since being gelded at Leicester, is also heading for the Sussex Downs tomorrow, though obviously our major week-end hope is Top Tug, who takes his chance in the Betfred Ebor at York, with £285,000 prize money the richest Flat handicap in Europe.

Alan said:”We are looking forward to running Top Tug, and he is definitely a better horse now than he was when he finished unplaced in the race last year, though being 6lb higher he will need to be.

“Top Tug has enjoyed a great summer. He ran a cracker against the classy Frontiersman at Newmarket before winning a competitive handicap at Goodwood, and we were delighted how well he then ran from a wide draw to finish fourth in the Duke of Edinburgh at Royal Ascot.

“We had planned to go back to Glorious Goodwood, but that deluge changed our plans, and another crack at the Ebor has been the plan since Ascot, and with the ground drying up through the week he goes to York with a solid each-way chance.

“Adam Kirby and Andrea Atzeni, who have both won on Top Tug, are riding at Goodwood, but we are pleased to have Martin Harley back on board. He rode the horse when he finished third at York last season, and he has been a lucky jockey for us.”