By Andrew Atkinson racing correspondent RIPON’S most iconic race, The William Hill Great St. Wilfrid Handicap Stakes takes pride of place at the Yorkshire venue on Saturday, August 17. Gunmetal, trained in Maunby by David Barron, who won the race in 2018, is bidding to saddle only the second horse to win back-to-back successes, carrying top weight of 9st 9lb. “Gunmetal is in very good form. The plan is to go and do exactly what he did last year,” said Barron. In the 20 runners field each-way selections are Gunmetal, Gulliver and Belated Breath. Ripon’s most valuable raceday of the season at Yorkshire’s ‘Garden Racecourse’, has prize money of £150,000 up for grabs. Ripon’s famous 6 furlong Handicap has been sponsored by William Hill for 26 years, their longest standing sports sponsorship, with £75,000 prizemoney on offer in 2019. Saturday’s Ripon showcase meeting includes the seventh running of The William Hill Silver Trophy Handicap over 6f (2.05) – a £20,000 consolation race for the horses balloted out of the William Hill Great St. Wilfrid. Alaadel (ew), Piper’s Note (ew) and Growl (ew) (2.05) are selected by in the 20 runners field. William Hill spokesperson, Rupert Adams said: “We are very proud sponsors of the Great St. Wilfrid Handicap, which delivers for us on a yearly basis. “Amazingly this is our 26th year, by far the longest standing sponsorship in our Portfolio, and one we look forward to continuing with.” James Hutchinson, Ripon Managing Director and Clerk of the Course said: “William Hill Great St Wilfrid day is always an occasion we really look forward to.” Ripon’s last nine winners of the race have been trained in Yorkshire, including by top trainers Tim Easterby, Richard Fahey and David O’Meara. Gunmetal’s trainer Barron, keeping an eye of the unpredictable British weather, said: “The potential problem would be soft ground. “Gunmetal prefers decent ground – so we’re hoping there’s not too much rain having fallen, up to, and including race day.” RIPON:  selections 1.30 King’s Caper. 2.05 Alaadel ew, Piper’s Note ew, Growl ew. 2.40 Eton College. 3.15 Gunmetal ew, Gulliver ew, Belated Breath ew. 3.50 Anna Bunina. 4.25 Lamloon ew, Gentle Look ew. 4.55 Euro Implosion. VARIAN TO STRIKE AT NEWMARKET By Andrew Atkinson racing correspondent ROGER Varian saddles Revolutionise, with David Egan up, in the Unibet 6 furlongs Grey Horse Handicap (2.45) at Newmarket on Saturday August 17. Revolutionise (10-1) ew selection is tipped for a place, along with Richard Hannon trained Chatham House (11-2), ridden by S. M. Levey. Varian is also noted in saddling Australias (5.05) with David Egan up, selected each-way by Power Train (2.10) trained by H. Palmer and ridden by Jack Mitchell are selected each-way by in Newmarket’s opening race. Michael Botti trained Lady Red Moon (ew) (3.20). Kinks (ew) (3.55) trained by Mick Channon and ridden by Charles Bishop. Moment of Hope (ew) (4.30). Australias (ew) (5.05). Tenax (ew) (5.35) trained by Nigel Tinker and After John (ew) (5.05) trained by Mick Channon and ridden by Callum Shepherd are selected by NAP: ETON COLLEGE 2.40 Newmarket. EACH-WAY double: MOMENT OF HOPE 4.30 Newmarket. LAMLOOM 4.25 Ripon. EACH-WAY treble: REVOLUTIONISE 2.45 Newmarket. GUNMETAL 3.15 Ripon. TENAX 5.35 Newmarket. EACH-WAY Yankee: POWER TRAIN 2.10 Newmarket. CHATHAM HOUSE 2.45 Newmarket. KINKS 3.55 Newmarket. AUSTRALIAS 5.05 Newmarket. The post Gunmetal on fire to repeat Ripon William Hill Great St. Wilfrid Handicap Stakes appeared first on Horse Racing News and Tips.