Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cheka Is Worth Checking out at Salisbury Today

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cheka Is Worth Checking out at Salisbury Today

Article excerpt

Byline: Saraband Racing Writer jnl.sport@ncjmedia.co.uk

THE Cheka has endured a really disappointing campaign so far, but he is given one final chance to redeem himself in the EBF Stallions Bathwick Tyres Conditions Stakes at Salisbury.

The seven-year-old burst onto the racing scene with a 10-length debut victory a Ascot some five years ago.

And although he has not quite scaled the heights that trainer Eve Johnson-Houghton would have dreamed of since, he has performed admirably on a number of occasions at Pattern level.

He looked a sprinter to be reckoned with when winning last year's Cammidge Trophy at Doncaster racecourse.

And that was the start of what turned out to be an excellent season as he went on to finish second in the July Cup and third behind the brilliant Moonlight Cloud in the Prix Maurice de Gheest.

On the strength of that form, he would be an odds-on favourite for his Salisbury assignment, but he has not looked the same horse in five starts this year.

However, there were signs of a revival when he finished third a Warwick on his penultimate start and he can be forgiven his last run at Lingfield after fluffing the start.

If he is can produce anything like his best form, he will be very hard to beat in this conditions event, with the booking of Ryan Moore an obvious positive.

It could be a good afternoon for title-chasing Moore, with Centred a major player in the Bathwick Tyres "Season Finale" Handicap.

A typically well-related product of Ballymacoll Stud, the Sir Michael Stoute-trained filly hinted at ability in three starts as a juvenile and has raised her game as a three-yearold, with two wins at Pontefract sandwiching a decent run in defeat at Goodwood.

She is up 7lb in the weights for her latest victory in West Yorkshire, but she is capable of defying that rise, with the step up to a mile and three-quarters likely to bring out even more progress. …

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