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There’s been a lot of rain in the Newbury area, so runners with proven form on soft ground are a must for that track. Charlie Appleby’s Creative Force looked really good when winning at Newmarket, but it is very different ground that he has to encounter on Saturday. TACTICAL is proven on soft ground and that could sway it in his favour.
He did really well to win at Newmarket on decent ground, beating Naval Crown who then finished fourth in the 2,000 Guineas. Andrew Balding has a good record at Newbury and Oisin Murphy is again in the saddle.
There’s lots of potential on offer and Fundamental has run in the Greenham Stakes already this season acquitting himself well in fifth. He also won nicely at Chelmsford over a mile, so dropping back to 7 furlongs in Listed company should not be a problem.
Devilwalla ran poorly in the 2,000 Guineas and it’s fascinating that Ralph Beckett is running him only two weeks after a disappointing run in the Colt’s Classic. They have reached for the blinkers and dropped him back in trip. He could win by a minute or completely bomb out with the blinkers! That’s the risk.
For that reason, I’ll side with CLOUDBRIDGE who failed narrowly to beat a good yardstick Mighty Gorka in a Group 3 at Kempton last September. He has been gelded over the winter and he could be very much on the up now stepped up to 7 furlongs.
There’s a lot of young, improving types in this 1m 2f handicap and the race has a rich history in producing stars, with the likes of Defoe, Al Kazeem and Time Test winning it before going on to much better things. Sir Michael Stoute won it before with Cannock Chase and saddles BAY BRIDGE now.
He was an impressive winner at Newcastle over 1m 2f on his reappearance last month and this son of New Bay should handle conditions. He’s one to keep on the right side with a trainer who brings his horses along slowly.
PEROTTO ran really well behind Creative Force force when second of four earlier this month and is proven on soft ground. With Ray Dawson ‘stealing’ – I mean claiming 3lbs – I really fancy him to win now. He’s 5lbs better off with another of Saturday’s rivals – Just Frank – who he was third to over course and distance last October. He’s very consistent and has only failed to place once in eight starts.
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