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Keith Melrose
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Horse Racing betting tips: Spirit can enhance Kevin Ryan's Magical Ayr Gold Cup record

Competitive handicaps are the order of the day on Saturday, with the racing highlights being Ayr's Gold Cup and Silver Cup. Keith Melrose from the Racing Post provides his best bets.

Keith Melrose's tips:

1.30 Newbury - Nymphadora @ 9/2
2.25 Ayr - Dream For Gold @ 25/1
3.35 Ayr - Magical Spirit @ 25/1

Odds displayed were correct at the time of writing and subject to fluctuation.

View the latest Horse Racing Odds

1.30 Newbury - Nymphadora @ 9/2

The World Trophy at Newbury is a five-runner race in which two horses (Thunderbear and Designer) have a fair amount to find on form and the two market leaders have reasons to doubt them. 

Sense Of Duty is being given a run to get ready for the Champions Series Sprint next month, and she has an alternate engagement at Beverley on Tuesday.

Meanwhile Raasel often runs well in small-field races like this, but he tends to win in bigger fields when there is a good pace to run at. 

What we are left with is Nymphadora. 

She is not just the default option, as she might be the only horse in the field placed to handle the conditions of a small-field five-furlong race in deep ground. 

We can take those points in turn. Oisin Murphy is likely to have the lead if he wants it on Nymphadora, who was always up there when winning at York in July. 

That race was over this trip and she has won over the same distance at Chester this year, when the going was described as soft. 

This represents a big class drop on Nymphadora's last two runs, in Group 2 and Group 1 company, and she represents an enticing bet. 

Keith Melrose's tip:

Nymphadora @ 9/2 - 1pt win

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2.25 Ayr - Dream For Gold @ 25/1

Kevin Ryan's record in the Ayr Silver Cup is not as strong as the Gold Cup, but that is almost certainly just a coincidence. 

Ryan sends any appropriate horse to Ayr and in Dream For Gold, he has a horse with the ideal sort of profile for a race like this.

This is because you can get into the Silver Cup with a lower handicap mark than is needed for the Gold Cup, it produces more progressive, young types who are still finding their correct level. 

Dream For Gold fits that, being one of only two three-year-olds in the race. 

He was also notably progressive early in summer, finishing second at Epsom to Indian Creak (who won an £80,000 race on his next start) despite struggling with every second of the course's unique charms. 

He then went down by a neck at Newmarket, in a handicap for three-year-olds which has worked out favourably.

He has not gone on from those runs in two appearances since, but circumstances did not fall right for him either time. 

They did at least offer Dream For Gold some important match practice for big-field handicaps, the first was in the Great St Wilfrid at Ripon, so he comes into this race unexposed but sufficiently experienced. 

That is a tasty combination and if you are going with just one horse in the Silver Cup to take advantage of bet365's enhanced place terms, he is the one for me.

Keith Melrose's tip:

Dream For Gold @ 25/1 - 1pt each-way (six places)

3.35 Ayr - Magical Spirit @ 25/1

Kevin Ryan's only previous Silver Cup winner is Magical Spirit, who blew the field apart three years ago. 

He finally gets a chance in the main event this year and ought to be getting more respect from the odds-makers relative to better-fancied stablemates Bielsa and Aleezdancer.

Magical Spirit's Ayr form is assured - he also finished fourth in the 2021 Silver Cup. 

He thrives on soft ground but, unlike Aleezdancer, does not need it, having run a cracking race on fast ground at York in May.

He also has one up on Bielsa, who is drawn on the far rail in stall one. Magical Spirit will break from stall 18 and has some of the most obvious pace angles in the race in his neighbourhood.

As in the Silver Cup, bet365 are offering six places each-way in the Ayr Gold Cup. 

If you would rather commit to one or two horses rather than scatter small win-only bets like an enthusiastic roulette player, Magical Spirit ought to be high on your shortlist. 

Only if there is much more rain than is currently forecast would I consider jumping ship, potentially onto stablemate Aleezdancer.

Keith Melrose's tip:

Magical Spirit @ 25/1 - 1pt each-way (six places)

Keith Melrose's tips:

1.30 Newbury - Nymphadora @ 9/2
2.25 Ayr - Dream For Gold @ 25/1
3.35 Ayr - Magical Spirit @ 25/1

Odds displayed were correct at the time of writing and subject to fluctuation.

View the latest Horse Racing Odds

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