MELISSA JONES SAYS: Watch out for Motivado

First published in Sport

IT MAY be as unoriginal as choosing a packet of ready salted crisps but Motivado is the pick in today’s Betfred Ebor.

The four-year-old has been in my notebook ever since his return to the track in June, when one of the favourites for the Northum-berland Plate.

It may seem odd to say it, given he was beaten nearly the length of the River Tyne, but I thought the run was excusable.

That’s because Sir Mark Prescott’s horses generally need their first outing and the ground was desperate, which did not suit at all.

I watched his second start on television, which on the form book reads like another poor effort.

Having travelled well at the back, he was rushed up by jockey Tom Eaves to join the leaders a couple of furlongs out, looking the likely winner.

That manoeuvre took its toll however, and he faded to finish eighth.

Other eagle-eyed viewers had spotted the promise at Goodwood three weeks ago, as the gelding went off a well backed favourite and he duly scooted in over today’s distance.

A 4lb penalty for that success has secured his place in this field, but some have said he cannot improve as much as he needs to at this course, following two ‘average’ runs.

I dispute that and by the end of today, Sir Mark will have hopefully orchestrated the plan to perfection.

Surely the horse can only get better by growing into his huge frame and he has untapped potential to bec-ome a Cup horse next year.

Whatever the future may hold for Motivado, a stud career beckons for the wonder that is Frankel.

The beast took his unbeaten run to 13 this week, even getting a mention on the terrestrial TV news where racing is often overlooked.

Nothing, with the exception of Sea the Stars, has excited the racing fraternity so much in recent times and the ‘Frankel Factor’ led to a massive 55% increase in attendance on day one of the Ebor meeting. That is brilliant news, although it’s a shame the boost will not be felt across racecourses next year with the all-time great set to retire.

For Chepstow trainer Milton Bradley, the wrong Nasri scored at the weekend.

While the footballer netted the winner for Man City, his sprinter with the same name was narrowly beaten in a good handicap.

It was a welcome return to form though and I am expecting a similar resurgence for Es Que Love at Newmarket today (3.25).

This race doesn’t look as hot as the ones he has been competing in of late.

And Chachamaidee can give Sir Henry Cecil another lift in his battle with cancer by defying a penalty in Goodwood’s 3.20.

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