pearl secret racing

Temple Stakes 2014 – Haydock Runners & Odds

Saturday’s Group 2 Temple Stakes at Haydock (3.45) is shaping up to be an absolute cracker, and one that has attracted some of the leading speedsters in Europe. David Myers previews the runners and odds.

The Channel 4 cameras will once again be on hand for this fantastic sprint where three of the last four winners of this race will be amongst a strong line-up, namely Sole Power in 2011 and Kingsgate Native in 2013 and 2010. Add to that, the presence of several young, improving sprinters, and it becomes clear as to why Saturday’s dash looks a scorcher.

Indeed, one of the aforementioned youngsters is Hot Streak (3/1), who was a Group 3 winning juvenile at Ascot last autumn (5f, good to soft), before beaten under 1l in a Group 1 at Newmarket. This colt returned to HQ three weeks ago when getting to within 3/4l to Sole Power in the Group 3 Palace House Stakes (5f, good to firm), and where Kingsgate Native was second.

Hot Streak was only caught up the hill that day, but will be more suited to Haydock’s flatter track when renewing rivalry with Sole Power, who aims to win this race for the second time. It’s worth noting that older runners held the edge in the Temple Stakes too, with just two 3yo’s winning in the last 18 years, a fact that may explain why the 7yo, Sole Power narrowly heads the betting at 11/4.

Also fancied in the market on 9/2 is David Barron’s Pearl Secret, who was beaten over 1l by Sole Power at Royal Ascot, and was again held by over 3l when eighth in the Palace House at Newmarket. This 5yo should improve for that first outing, but will need to find more if getting in front of Sole Power.

However, let’s not underestimate the veteran, Kingsgate Native (7/1), who goes for victory No.3 in this race, and showed he was no back number when going down by just 1/2l to Sole Power in the aforementioned race at Newmarket three weeks ago. At odds of 7/1, he looks sure to be thereabouts and offers each-way value.

Of the bigger prices, Hamza (10/1) was beaten under 2l when third in the Group 1 Abbaye last autumn (5f, soft), and recorded a career best when winning a Group 3 at Newmarket last month (6f, good). He may prove difficult to peg back if nothing takes him on for the lead.

Dutch Masterpiece (14/1) was an improver last term, but has a bit to prove having finished last of eight in handicap company last month, while Jack Dexter (14/1) won a Group 3 last term but fluffed his lines when favourite in a Group 2 at York last week where soft ground was in his favour.

Hawkeyethenoo (25/1) is another of the old warriors who will have his supporters, but his last win was 21 races ago, while Mirza (20/1) has a bit to prove at this level.

The market leader has won three of the last nine renewals of the Temple Stakes, which could see backers siding with Sole Power, though having been beaten in this race for the last two years at 11/10 and 3/1, there could be value elsewhere.

That value could come via Pearl Secret at 9/2, who may get a lot closer to Sole Power than at Newmarket where the ground may have been too firm, Pearl Secret’s chance will increase with every drop of forecast rain which may hit Haydock ahead of race time.

Here are the full trends covering the last 18 Temple Stakes winners…

All 18 winners ran in a Pattern event where 16 made the top six and 13 scored – 10 in Group races.
17 were British or Irish-bred – the former responsible for 10 winners.
16 were 4yo’s or older – three-year-olds struck twice from around 32 runners, and both victors were well fancied. The three-year-olds also had five career runs compared to the remainder with nine outings or more.
15 won a class 2 handicap or higher.
14 won during their last four outings.
12 ran during the past month – five of the exceptions returned following Group 1 outings the year before.
Henry Candy trained two winners.
Fillies have a decent strike-rate.