A star cast of sprinters takes the stage for the feature race of the weekend, the Group 2 Temple Stakes (3.45pm Saturday at Haydock).
Marginal favourite Goldream (11/2) showed consistent form in handicaps last season, winning three times and finishing in the first four on all eight starts. He made a seamless transition to Group race company when running on well to beat Justice Day (14/1) and Kingsgate Native (16/1) by 1¼ lengths and the same in the Palace House Stakes on his reappearance at Newmarket three weeks ago and fully deserves his place in the field.
However, the main problem for Goldream is the ground. All four of his career wins on turf have come on good or faster going so, with the going at Haydock already good to soft and further rain forecast, underfoot conditions may not be ideal.
One with no such worries is Hot Streak (6/1), who put up an exceptional performance for a three-year-old when beating Pearl Secret (11/1) by half a length on soft going in this race last year. Kingsgate Native, Justice Day and Jack Dexter (20/1) all finished further behind on that occasion.
Hot Streak did not quite live up to expectations as the season unfolded but he proved his recent well-being with a promising third, beaten 2¾ lengths, behind Mecca’s Angel in the Group 3 Prix de Saint-Georges at Longchamp early this month. So trainer Kevin Ryan’s (pictured) four-year-old should be a tough nut to crack once again.
Pretend (6/1) has won five of his last six starts on Tapeta and Polytrack since dropped back to sprinting distances in December. Having won the Listed Hever Stakes over 5f at Lingfield on his penultimate start, he has little or nothing to find with the best of these on official ratings. However his sole run on turf over 7f at Meydan over a year ago was inconclusive, so whether he is capable of reproducing his recent form back on turf is anyone’s guess.
Kingsgate Native, trained like Goldream by in-form Robert Cowell, has been called some names in his time, but proved he was no back number when third beaten 2½ lengths in the aforementioned Palace House Stakes won by his stable companion. He is entitled to improve for that run, his first since September, and while it may be asking too much for him to win again as a 10-year-old, he did win this race in 2010 and 2013.
G Force (7/1) commands respect as a Group 1 winner but carries a penalty because of it and has been off the course since October. He is probably better over an extra furlong in any case.
Danzeno (8/1) should have no problem with the ground but has yet to race, never mind win, over the minimum trip and has an absence of 231 to overcome.
Temple Stakes Betting Tips Verdict
Old man Kingsgate Native looks a touch over-priced at 16/1 for a race he has such a good record in. But all things considered, our Temple Stakes betting tip must be to bet on HOT STREAK each-way at best odds of 6/1 with Betfair Sportsbook, SkyBet or race sponsors Betfred to win the Temple Stakes for the second year running.