Today on Sky Sports Racing: Defiance clashes with Illinois at Lingfield | Racing News

The Sky Sports Racing cameras head to Ascot and Lingfield for an intriguing Saturday of action…

2.40 Ascot – Victoria Cup

Four-year-olds have won six of the last 10 renewals of this race and most interesting of all in this race would be Merlin The Wizard. He won two handicaps last season as a three-year-old but ended the season with a disappointing performance in the Cambridgeshire when going off second favourite. The seven furlongs with a stiff finish could be a lot more favourable for him at Ascot than Newmarket and he comes here for an in-form stable.

John and Thady Gosden-trained Mostabshir warrants his chance having been gelded two starts back after being highly tried. His mark of 103 looks more than workable and could be dangerous to discount.

Wizard Of Eye has run some great races in Group company and the recent stable switch to Charlie Fellowes makes him an interesting rival. He finished just six lengths behind Modern Games in last year’s Lockinge and a mark of 99 could underestimate him.

3.00 Lingfield – Derby Trial Stakes

Illinois hasn’t won since his debut at the Curragh but was thrown into the deep end after his victory when finishing third in the Criterium de Saint-Cloud behind stable companion Los Angeles. He was slightly disappointing in his seasonal debut in the Ballysax Stakes when a well-beaten third.

The other Aidan O’Brien colt who finished in front of him that day re-opposes here in The Euphrates who also comes in with a chance. Defiance is another one who enters the Derby reckoning with a nice run last time after running close in the Epsom Derby trial. He was thrown into the Royal Lodge after winning on debut and his maiden victory form looks very good now.

2.25 Lingfield – Trial Fillies’ Stakes

Danielle had a reputation before coming to the track after being related to Gold Cup winner Courage Mon Ami and she finally got her head in front the last day, winning by 12 lengths. She bumped into a nice Godolphin prospect on her second start but clearly had learned on that to win last time. She is as short as 10/1 for the Oaks and looks to enhance her chances here.

Treasure made an impressive winning debut for Royal connections at Nottingham when pushing the field aside. Not a lot of that form has been franked so she would need to kick on again to compete with the Gosden filly, however the sky is the limit with her.

Best of the rest

Kotari is on the hat-trick hunt in the opener at Ascot (1.30), whilst Flying Finn and My Margie seek an identical feat 35 minutes later. Later on, the well-bred Midair looks to break his maiden tag under William Buick. Across the channel, Chantilly hosts Group Three action in the Prix de Guiche, which features the Andre Fabre-saddled First Look. Stateside, the Man O War Stakes takes centre stage, with two Charlie Appleby rivals Silver Knott and Nations Pride vying for glory. Finally, Percy Warner Park is the venue for an excellent-looking Grade One hurdle which sees ex-English recruit Zabeel Champion compete.

Today’s racecards | Sky Bet

Watch every race from Ascot, Lingfield and Hexham – all live on Sky Sports Racing on Saturday, May 11.

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