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Not many can be seriously fancied with several of these qualifying for a handicap mark after this. Thomas Cochrane and Nazwa both showed enough on their debuts in the same race at Wolverhampton to suggest that with normal improvement they would likely figure, but BROWN DELIVERS (nap) may well prove too good for them. His fourth of six in a conditions event contested by three previous winners at Chelmsford in November looks strong form.
Sweet Angel will be dangerous if her Fibresand handicap form can be transferred to Polytrack but the most obvious answer is CRISTAL PALLAS CAT, who has already won twice in this grade this year and ran well in a handicap when last in action. Mrs Benson and New Look have each-way claims.
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A chance is taken on VINO SANTO, who showed a bit more last time and he’s one of the few in here open to improvement. Air Of York had excuses here last week and he’s next best, ahead of Toofi.
The leading form contenders are RIDGEWAY AVENUE, Red Flyer and Willyorwon’t He in that order of preference. Two of them are seasonal debutants so the market signals may prove significant to some extent. That also applies to interesting newcomer Imperial Sands.
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This shouldn’t take much winning. Although his narrow defeat at Chelmsford last month hasn’t been advertised by the winner in the meantime, EPIC EXPRESS still looks the one to beat on that performance now starting out for Chris Dwyer. Torrkee showed enough on his debut at the same track to suggest he is likely to figure granted normal improvement, while it is worth keeping an eye on Sovereign Slipper whose stable had a newcomer go in at 16-1 here seven days ago.
Despite another 6lb rise and the outside stall, it’s hard to oppose UZINCSO given his 5-6 record in C&D handicaps since September, especially as he has defied a higher draw in the past. The unexposed Lexington Force and Divine Messenger, who should be suited by the return to this trip, may be the ones to follow him home.
Three of these met here in January with VIBRANCE finishing second, Koeman third and Cleonte fifth. James Fanshawe’s consistent filly is taken to confirm the form and enhance her already impressive C&D record of 4-7. The unexposed Thai Terrier should appreciate this return to Polytrack and is entitled to respect.
The unexposed Alnasherat seems likely to run well while it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Quick Breath figure given that he is proven fresh. It may be worth siding with TIPPERARY JACK, with his latest second here having worked out well and a subsequent absence no real concern.
Having overcome an absence and the outside stall to make a winning stable debut/AW over C&D three weeks ago, Capote’s Dream is entitled to plenty of respect but it may be worth taking a chance with LAST PAGE. Tony Carroll’s gelding drops in grade on this third start back from an absence and is 2lb lower than when gaining his latest success over this C&D. Phuket Power and The Blue Bower are others to consider.
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