Lyric Fillies’ Stakes betting tips: Desert Diamond to deliver at York again

The Lyric Fillies’ Stakes betting tips given by Horsebetting.com experts put up course and distance winner Desert Diamond as their main bet to win the extended 1m 2f Listed feature race on York’s evening card on Friday, 27 July. Fellow three-year-old Rasima is rated the main danger on some useful back form. Pleasant Surprise is the recommended each-way bet now returning to action for Luca Cumani. Find out why when your read our 2018 Lyric Fillies’ Stakes betting tips preview.

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Odds
11/10
Selection
Desert Diamond
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Odds
11/2
Danger
Rasima
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Odds
7/2
E/W
Pleasant Surprise
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Desert a real Diamond for Stoute and can call the tune in Lyric

Desert Diamond was a ready winner over course and distance for trainer Sir Michael Stoute in May, so can add some black type to her name with victory in the Listed 1m 2f Lyric Fillies’ Stakes at York on Friday (19:30).

Sporting the famous white, pink and green silks of Prince Khalid Abdullah, this three-year-old filly justified favouritism in a handicap at the Knavesmire three starts back when tracking the leaders to close up three out.

Desert Diamond was then produced to lead in between the last two furlong markers and kept on well inside the last to score by 1 3/4 lengths from Akvavera with Brexitmeansbrexit was a further length behind in third. That trio were a further nine clear of the field to give the form a solid look.

Connections were keen to step Desert Diamond up in class and went to Royal Ascot with her in search of the Sandringham Handicap dropping back to the straight mile. This daughter of Dubawi was a far from disgraced four-length fourth of 23 there when denied a clear run approaching the final furlong after making some headway.

She simply couldn’t reach the leaders, but has come out and run well since on her debut at Listed level on Eclipse day at Sandown last time out. Again racing over a mile, Desert Diamond was a three-quarters of a length second to Awesometank in the Distaff when gradually closing all the time after taking second in the final 150 yards.

The way she finished off that race suggests stepping back to the mile-and-a-quarter in this will suit her down to the ground, as this is a much easier contest for the grade. Desert Diamond now has the very handy Oisin Murphy taking over in the saddle and that jockey booking only further enhances her considerable claims.

Three-year-olds get 9lb from the older fillies and mares here, so that is another big plus. As the sole course and distance winner in the Lyric lineup, Desert Diamond just has to be our main bet in this race.

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Rasima rates the main danger

Andrea Atzeni has some choice rides to look forward to at Glorious Goodwood next week, but before that he partners Rasima for Roger Varian in this. She has some useful back form that suggests she may be the one to give Desert Diamond the most to think about.

As the only other three-year-old in the race, this daughter of Iffraaj came good at the fifth time of asking when landing an extended mile handicap at Nottingham by a neck in May. Rasima then went straight into Listed company for the 1m 2f Abingdon Stakes at Newbury where she was a 5 1/2 lengths fifth to Sea Of Class, who has since come out and won the Irish Oaks.

There could hardly be a better advertisement for the form than that. Some of the other fillies who chased that subsequent Classic hero home were also entered here, but skip the race in favour of other targets.

In their absence, Rasima can continue her improvement and also demonstrated progress when finishing a 1 3/4 lengths runner-up to another Stoute inmate Smart Call in a Group 3 on the all-weather at Newcastle again over a mile-and-a-quarter last time out.

She ran on there, chasing the winner well inside the final furlong and a similar effort now eased in grade surely puts Rasima in the picture at the finish. For that reason and the fact her official rating is 2lb higher, she looks to be the main danger to Desert Diamond with their profiles being so similar.

Pleasant Surprise an each-way bet

Luca Cumani is back in-form, so his Pleasant Surprise is an intriguing contender looking to belie 278 days off the track and win this on reappearance. The four-year-old was highly tried in her final four starts of last season after landing a Doncaster handicap over a mile-and-a-half.

Pleasant Surprise finished runner-up on three consecutive occasions when running at Listed and then Group 3 level. She was perhaps unlucky not to hang on at Saint-Cloud when headed in the final strides to go down by a short-neck.

Connections then stepped her up in class for the Group 3 Princess Royal Stakes during the Cambridgeshire meeting at Newmarket and Pleasant Surprise was an always held half-a-length second to Apphia. That does not tell the full story, however, as she reversed the placing from her previous outing at the Suffolk venue on To Eternity.

She was then dropped back in trip to this distance and sent over to France again for her final start of the campaign, but Pleasant Surprise weakened 100 yards from the line and was eased by regular rider Jamie Spencer when it was clear she wouldn’t be winning. We haven’t seen her on a racecourse since last October.

Cumani has a knack of getting horses that have had a lengthy break back fit, however, and if running up to her current mark of 103 Pleasant Surprise should be making her presence felt in spite of the 9lb she has to give the younger fillies that take her on.

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