Veteran Hoof It aims for Scottish Stewards’ Cup crown

Popular veteran sprinter, Hoof It, is set to make his seasonal bow as he aims to take the spoils at Hamilton Park Racecourse’s richest raceday on Friday evening. The 10yo was 2nd in the £34,000 John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup last year and must now shoulder top weight following the defection of 2016 winner, Orion’s Bow. Trained by Mick Easterby, Hoof It will be making his 54th racecourse appearance in a career that has seen him win the Goodwood Stewards’ Cup in 2011 and the Stewards’ Cup Consolation race in 2016.

Of the field of 15 set to go to post, all but five hold entries in the Goodwood Stewards’ Cup. Muntadab (Roger Fell) will need to put a disappointing run in the Wokingham Handicap behind him but a reproduction of his performances in competitive handicaps at York, Ripon and Doncaster prior to that would see him be competitive. Muntadab was beaten just a neck by Al Qahwa (David O’Meara) at York in May and the two re-oppose here.

Local trainer Jim Goldie fields another popular veteran, Jack Dexter, while Keith Dalgleish sends Dark Defender and War Department from his nearby yard.

The evening’s highlights also include the £42,000 Listed British Stallion Studs EBF Glasgow Stakes. It is a high-quality race that has been won by Hunter’s Light and Postponed in past years, as well as 2016 winner Ventura Storm, who went on to finish 2nd in the 2016 St Leger and win Group contests in France and Italy.

Top-rated this year is Call To Mind trained in Newmarket by William Haggas for The Queen. Unraced as a 2yo, the colt has only had three runs, the latest of which saw him finish 6th in the King Edward VII Stakes (Group 2) at Royal Ascot, only 3¼ of a length behind Permian. He struggled to get a clear run that day and is likely to improve. He had Frankuus, a winner of a Listed and a Group 3 race in France as a 2yo, 2¾ lengths behind him that day and the two re-oppose in this race. Frankuus, the first offspring of the mighty Frankel to run at Hamilton Park, is one of two runners for Mark Johnston.

Defoe, trained by Roger Varian, carries the colours of Postponed’s owner, Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum. Unbeaten in in two high class handicaps this season, his rating has increased from 88 to 104 as a result. He now needs to prove he can be competitive at this higher level.

Fierce Impact represents David Simcock and Qatar Racing while Twin Star travels from Andrew Balding’s Berkshire base, the latter having his first run for Balding.  The line-up is completed by the only filly in the field, the improving Euro Nightmare, trained by Keith Dalgleish.