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The penalised Faivoir sets the standard on form and should go well again, but KAKAMORA shaped nicely when second over course and distance last month and gets the vote in the anticipation of further improvement. Poniente needs to put a poor run behind her but that’s not out of the question with a hood refitted.
Although his two main rivals achieved a higher level of form over hurdles, the progressive ANNSAM (NAP) has valuable chasing experience over C&D and is taken to build on his good second here last time. Strong Glance should make a chaser and will find this company less taxing than in the Greatwood last month. Fidelio Vallis, another making his debut over fences, is respected too, but he has to prove his stamina on his first attempt at 2m 4f.
Wind surgery has evidently worked a treat for MISTY WHISKY and she’s taken to build on her reappearance success. Getaweapon and Go Chique are the main dangers on form, while a few others are open to improvement (any market moves should be heeded).
Last year’s winner Caid Du Lin can race off a 2lbs lower mark today and is much respected but the unexposed ERITAGE looks the one to be on. He has made a promising start over fences, including over C&D, and there’s probably more progress to come. If there’s to be an upset, it could come from Baby King, who shaped better than the result in this race last year and might have needed the run first time out.
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The youngest in the line-up, EARLOFTHECOTSWOLDS, went close at Ascot last time and should give another good account of himself over today’s longer trip. Most of the others carry doubts for one reason or another but Another Venture is proven under the conditions and should go well after a layoff. Brelan D’As, dropping in class, and Head To The Stars – returning to the scene of his sole chase success – are others to consider.
A tricky puzzle to solve with a mixture of unexposed and well-handicapped types in opposition. Get The Appeal and Docte Dina fall into the former category, represent top stables and are capable of going close.
Oakley Hall could be revived by a change of stable and is interesting after 518 days off. BROKEN QUEST returns from an even longer spell on the sidelines but his stable could hardly be in better form and he’s taken to make a winning reappearance under optimum conditions.
With several interesting newcomers in the line-up, it may not be plain sailing for LE BATEAU, but he sets a fair standard for the others to aim at and may have further improvement in him over today’s shorter trip. Hartnoll Hero should step up on his encouraging debut run, while Blumen Glory has a future under rules judged on his sole run in points.
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