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  • Sandown Best Bet: Course Distance Winner Artistic Star Can Shine Brightly On Season Debut

Sandown best bet: Course-distance winner Artistic Star can shine brightly on season debut

The Gordon Richards Stakes might not offer the biggest prize on Sandown’s card, but it does provide a high-quality field, with all seven classy runners holding serious claims of having a say.

14:25 Sandown: bet365 Gordon Richards Stakes (1 mile 2 furlongs)

Barely more than a couple of betting points cover the four market leaders, with Harry Charlton’s Okeechobee the likely favourite to carry Ryan Moore to victory after returning from an 18-month break to finish a respectable runner-up behind odds-on favourite Dubai Honour in an all-weather pipe-opener at Kempton earlier this month.

Planet Sport Bet Daily Special: Bet £20+ cash on any runner in the race and if Okeechobee wins by more than 1 length, get a £5 Free Bet

Leading the challenge, the King’s horse Desert Hero is looking to replicate the back-to-back wins he enjoyed last summer when landing the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood.

He should go well for the William Haggas/Tom Marquand team, while Charlie Appleby’s Flying Honours looks interesting on his return to action under William Buick, after finishing lame in last May’s Dante Stakesat York, his only outing since winning three out of his last four outings in 2022.

Israr is another of the four betting principals likely to be in the final shakedown, but should any of those falter, then it’s interesting to note that there has been plenty of support in the Tipstrr community for Artistic Star to hit the ground running on season debut.

Suggested best bet: Artistic Star in the 14:25 at Sandown

He clearly runs well when fresh, having won his only outing as a juvenile in 2022, and then kicking off last season with an equally impressive win in the Darley Novice Stakes over this course-and-distance last May.

Subsequently seventh of 14 in the Epsom Derby and third in the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot, Ralph Beckett’s four-year-old is clearly used to rubbing shoulders with Flat racing’s elite, and Rob Hornby is expected to be given another good ride here.

Artistic Star has been gelded during his eight-month winter break, and if that has the desired effect on his performance, then it would be no surprise to see him in the each-way mix here, especially with some major bookmakers paying out on three places for this competitive seven-runner renewal.


READ MORE: Friday ITV racing tips: Best bets for Sandown and Perth on April 26

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