The fav can get our Saturday off to a flyer at Newbury in a very small-but-select field that goes to post. Kevin Ryan’s runner only got going late on to win on debut at Haydock, but then took a significant step forward when a clear second to Mystery Power in the Superlative Stakes at Newmarket’s July meeting.
He still has a bit of strengthening up to do behind the saddle but is only going to improve as the season progresses.
Stuart Williams’ runner cost 90 grand at the horses in training sale and has managed to win already at Goodwood last year off a few pounds lower. It was a great return to action to only just fail by a neck when coming from well off the pace at Nottingham last time.
I would suspect they were hoping to scrape in at the bottom of the handicap in the big one later on the card – but this consolation prize is not too shabby either.
His win early in the season at Chester for Andrew Balding was very impressive as he hammered Kew Gardens by a long-looking eight lengths. His sights are lowered on Saturday after dipping his toe into the best company around. The little bit of rain that is forecast will suit him down to the ground and he can turn this into a real test of stamina.
Let’s hope he’s not at his ceiling rating just yet, although there is no getting away from the fact it was a disappointing run last month, after being slowly away at Newmarket. Hopefully, they have solved the problem for his reluctant showing and have reached for the cheek-pieces to give him some added focus.
David Egan retains the ride and he’s drawn with a bit of pace around him.
An unlucky run when eighth in the Bunbury Cup could see him fly in here a little under the radar, as regards his price. He wouldn’t have won, but he could’ve caught a slice of the each-way pie at 50/1 and can hit the places at least on Saturday.
We need him to pounce on the leaders late on and trainer Michael Wigham has booked the right man for the job in Jamie Spencer.
He has been a cliff horse of mine for a long time now and this is my final roll of the dice with him. He put up an eye-catching performance at York last time under conditions that weren’t ideal and is reportedly difficult to train, as he suffers with foot problems. The rain has arrived and it all looks perfect for a big run, especially as low-drawn runners are normally favoured in soft conditions here.
Looks a tidy each-way play with Megan Nicholls taking another 3lbs off.
Charlie Appleby’s runner has performed with credit behind three very good horses in Cape Byron, Dream of Dreams and Limato. He missed the start and had to be ‘rushed up’ to stay in contention in the July Cup last time and considering how hard he went in the early stages – it was a decent effort.
Let’s hope the ‘dead eight’ runners stand their ground as he looks another cracking each-way play at 8/1 with Paddy back up in trip to 7f.
* Prices correct at time of publishing