The Flat season revs up a gear with the traditional cavalry charge of the Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster on Saturday.
With most of these early-season prizes you now need a Group horse lurking in a handicap.But even Mondialiste last year finished runner-up to Gabrial before winning a Group One race in Canada later in this season for David O’Meara.
O’Meara saddles Lord of the Land who has been punted into favouritism from double-digit prices. If the money is talking then the winner factory can strike an early blow for the North on Town Moor.
But there’s action at Wolverhampton & Fundalk first …
Swendab, 5f, W’hapton 5.45pm
John O ‘Shea’s colt looks dangerously well treated on the all-weather off the back of a cracking effort when just a length third in a competitive handicap at Chelmsford City last time. That was after a long absence and connections have not rushed him back to the races to take advantage.
He’s had three weeks since then to hopefully overcome the ‘bounce factor’. He drawn in box four and provided he doesn’t leave his race behind when exiting the stalls, this looks a good opportunity under 5lb claimer Ciaran McKee.
Great Wide Open, Dundalk, 7pm
Paddy’s got his wallet out for the whole card at Fundalk where Charles O’Brien’s runner put up a very bold display from the front last time considering there were four or five vying for the early pace.
He showed plenty of courage to get his head in front and may have gottten off lightly with just a 3lb rise for that success. He can follow up here for my of my favourite jockeys – Declan ‘The Enforcer’ McDonogh.
Washington DC, Dundalk, 7.30pm
The Ballydoyle colt is top-rated here by some distance and he will give the Coolmore operation at pointer as to how far forward their squad is. Ran a blinder when last seen against the 2,000 Guineas favourite Air Force Blue and this a perfect starting point as he has no Group penalty to carry.
Tom Dooley, Dundalk, 8pm
He’s been pretty good to us so far and was very unlucky not to collect again last time again. He’s been pinched up 2lbs for that effort but with a little luck he would of been a solid winner last time. He still looks well treated off 57 as he’s won off 60 before.
Pivotal Flame , 1m 1f, Wolves, 8.15pm
Luke Morris’s mount doesn’t look to be harshly treated on her course and distance maiden earlier this month. She ran green throughout the contest but eventually came good to get her head in front on the line.
She could still be on a very lenient mark and she can take this race at the expense of Manjaam who rates the obvious danger on this step up in trip.
Swiss Cross, 7f, Wolves, 8:45pm
This isn’t an April Fool as I know he’s on a long losing sequence. I’m putting him up as an each-way shout as he’s dropped down massively in the handicap from a winning perch of 94 to tonight’s 68. This could be his last chance saloon.
The McEntee stable is in good form and he’s wearing all the equipment tonight for a bold show.