Lonsdale Cup betting tips: Stradivarius impossible to oppose and has bonus in his sights at York

Horsebetting.com give their 2018 Lonsdale Cup betting tips with red-hot favourite and leading stayer Stradivarius a worthy market leader. He is expected to land the spoils in the 2m Group 2 event on day three of York’s Ebor Festival and reap a bonus for connections after previous wins in the Ascot Gold Cup and Goodwood Cup. There are no real dangers, but Desert Skyline is the forecast choice behind the John Gosden star on Friday, 24 August. Idaho, meanwhile, is worth an each-way punt and you can learn why in our 2018 Lonsdale Cup betting tips preview.

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Odds
4/9
Selection
Stradivarius
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Odds
16/1
Danger
Desert Skyline
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Odds
11/1
E/W
Idaho
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Stradivarius can continue sublime season with Lonsdale success

John Gosden trained star Stradivarius looks a good thing and is impossible to oppose in the 2m Group 2 Lonsdale Cup at York’s Ebor Festival on Friday (14:25), despite having to carry a penalty for previous successes at the highest level. The four-year-old has won all three of his starts this year and a fourth victory here will furnish owner Bjorn Nielsen with a £1,000,000 bonus for completing a hat-trick of stayers’ events.

This son of Sea The Stars progressed throughout last season to go from a Beverley handicapper to third in the St Leger where only beaten half-a-length by Capri. That placed effort in the Doncaster Classic came off the back of victories in the Group 2 Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot and the Group 2 Goodwood Cup – over a further trip than the Leger.

Stradivarius rounded off last season with a length third to Order Of St George on softer ground than ideal in the Long Distance Cup at British Champions Day at Ascot. He was always going to be among the leading stayers for this campaign and made a winning return to action here at the Knavesmire in May when running out a ready three-length winner of the Yorkshire Cup beating Desert Skyline, who re-opposes here, over 1m 6f.

That put Stradivarius spot on to tackle 2m 4f and the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot for the first time and he duly turned the tables on old adversary Order Of St George when the pair were sent off joint-favourites. He stayed on gamely from French raider Vazirabad to score another Group 1 by three-quarters of a length.

Now chasing the bonus, connections went to Glorious Goodwood and Stradivarius justified being sent off odds-on as he retained his crown when dropping back in trip to 2m. He closed under pressure to challenge at the furlong marker and soon led, running out a half-a-length winner over Torcedor, who has since had a change of owner and trainer.

While that rival has moved abroad and is being aimed at the Melbourne Cup in Australia, it has removed one of the main British Isles challengers to Stradivarius’ dominance of the division. On all known form, this is simply his for the taking, and Frankie Dettori is back in the saddle after fellow Italian jockey Andrea Atzeni deputised at Goodwood while he served a ban.

He may be a short price, but there is nothing in the line-up that even comes close to matching what Stradivarius has achieved. The assessor may be content to keep him on an unchanged mark of 118 for a fifth consecutive race, yet that underestimates a superb stayer who has won three of the four Group 1s he’s contested.

Stradivarius is fully expected to shoulder the extra 3lb he gives all-round en route to victory. If punters want to look beyond him, then there is value in making a forecast bet and that is what we advise among our 2018 Lonsdale Cup tips.

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Desert Skyline the forecast bet

Gosden’s fellow Newmarket handler David Elsworth saddles Desert Skyline – a familiar opponent for Stradivarius who he has the beating off. In the absence of more serious rivals, however, the form of the Yorkshire Cup at this venue during the Dante Festival has to be taken seriously and he appeals as the one most likely to chase the market leader home.

This four-year-old son of Tamayuz enjoyed his finest hour last season when unable to take Stradivarius and the other colts on in the St Leger, with the gelding going instead for the Group 2 Doncaster Cup over 2m 2f. Desert Skyline was produced to challenge entering the final furlong, then hit front with a 120 yards to go and stayed on strongly to beat Thomas Hobson 1 1/2 lengths.

It was a deserved victory for connections after a series of very solid placed efforts in the Bahrain Trophy, Goodwood Cup when third to Stradivarius and a Group 2 at Deauville. It also earned Desert Skyline an official mark of 112, which like his old foe is unchanged despite subsequent outings this season.

Given he was beaten only three lengths by Stradivarius on return to action in the Yorkshire Cup, he now faces him yet again on 3lb better terms which ought to give Desert Skyline every chance of getting closer. There was clearly something amiss when he was tailed off and dead last of nine in the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot.

Desert Skyline also had excuses last time out in the Goodwood Cup when hampered and unable to make his move. With trainer Elsworth’s yard in much better shape now, and in-form jockey William Buick taking the ride, he should be putting in a big run behind Stradivarius.

Idaho interesting and each-way value

Believe it or not, the Aidan O’Brien trained Idaho is still unexposed a stayer after just three career outings further than a mile-and-a-half. As the second highest ratings wise in the Lonsdale Cup line-up on a mark of 116, he is an each-way betting alternative for punters to consider on his second start over 2m.

Take Torcedor out from the Goodwood Cup, and this five-year-old was closest to Stradivarius, though admittedly with 6 1/2 lengths to find. Idaho, like Desert Skyline above, meets the winner on 3lb better terms here, so is another who should be getting closer to the winner on that Group 1 form.

This son of Galileo won on his first British start of the season after returning from a world tour following his 5 1/4 lengths third to wonder filly Enable in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth at Ascot last July. That was a Group 3 victory at Chester’s May Festival over an extended 1m 5f, and the manner of his 3 1/2 lengths success suggested there was more to come from Idaho as a stayer.

He then dropped down in trip to contest the Group 1 Coronation Cup at Epsom and Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot, but failed to fire in either. Idaho is clearly crying for further and will have learned a lot from that first try at 2m in the Goodwood Cup when stepping back up in distance last time out.

As he is now 3lb below his last winning mark and there may be more to come from him in this sphere, Idaho is well worth a wager to make the frame again. He’s therefore included as our top each-way punt among 2018 Lonsdale Cup betting tips.

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