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Top Fox didn’t have to be at his best to win over 1m 4f at Kempton in February, but he moves into handicaps with potential and needs taking seriously. Arabic Culture and Financial Conduct both have something to recommend them, but BLOW YOUR HORN is slowly getting his act together and could be able to defy his 3lbs rise for a good second at Doncaster.
John Gosden saddles two well-bred newcomers and both need consideration, but MAYTAL looks the one to beat. Sir Michael Stoute’s filly is sure to appreciate today’s step up in trip and the stable couldn’t be in better form.
The quick turnaround is a slight concern, but Monday’s runaway Redcar winner BRIARDALE is well in under a penalty and could follow up. Despoina, lightly raced and in good hands, should be winning races this year and looks the biggest danger, while Melgate Majeure goes well here and has solid place claims. So Macho would be interesting if attracting support on his first start for a new yard.
Recent winners Francisco Bay and especially the unpenalised Vanity Affair figure prominently in calculations, but the pair to appeal most are Breguet Boy and SECOND SLIP. The former could have more progress in him over 1m 2f this season, but Second Slip is preferred.
The ground may have been too soft for him when a beaten favourite on his handicap debut in October and he remains capable of better.
Fae The Port won going away at Southwell last week and he’s well worth a crack at this trip. Whether he can prove as effective on this surface remains to be seen though. Tara Iti and Headshot are respected, but if there is a potential big improver on show it could be DONIZETTI.
He caught the eye at Doncaster on his final two-year-old run, has had wind surgery since and should be well suited by today’s longer trip.
Baby Alya was impressive here on her debut and this well-bred filly should have a bright future, but she’s up against an interesting rival in MY SWALLOW. The selection was comfortably on top at Sandown when last seen, form which has been boosted by the runner-up, and he returns with his stable in fine form. Unforgotten and Isla Kai are the other pair with form claims.
Laxton Ladd still has the capacity to do better and is considered, while Kats Bob is on a dangerous mark if the hood works the oracle. ROYAL ADVICE (NAP) has to prove himself at 7 furlongs, but he’s well treated under a penalty and he’s certainly bred to stay. He can follow up last week’s success. Cosmos Raj ran well yesterday.
The unexposed Burrows Seeside should stay 7 furlongs in time, and he’s respected after his short break. Great Colaci, Al Suil Eile and Bobby Joe Leg are feared, but ATHOLLBLAIR BOY ought to be winning races off this mark and he’d be a big player if reproducing the form he showed on his last all-weather start.
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