Violette Szabo (trained by Nigel Tinkler)
UK-based Nigel Tinkler is very underestimated as a trainer – particularly with his handicappers. VIOLETTE SZABO has shown a bit of ability in his four maiden runs and will start off in handicaps off a mark of 69 and I wouldn’t be surprised if he rates a fair bit higher before the season is out. The yard’s Kaeso pulled off a similar feat when rated 66 a couple of seasons ago and then rose to a mark of 99 by winning four handicaps on the trot.
Ridenza (trained by Michael Halford)
RIDENZA only had the one start last season and won a Leopardstown maiden impressively enough from Tasalka, with Mythic back in third. She’s a daughter of Sea the Stars and is bred to be very useful. She had a small setback after that win, but is back in full work and there was talk of the Irish 1,000 Guineas at the Curragh being a target on June 13. That’s a tall order, however she should make her mark in good company before the year is out.
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Rovaniemi (trained by David Simcock)
ROVANIEMI went to Lingfield on debut and was punted off the boards but got done for a lack of experience after travelling like the best horse for most of the race. The winner of that Johan followed up next time at Musselburgh for the William Haggas yard before being outclassed when sixth to Military March at Newmarket in a Group 3. Rovaniemi went to Lingfield and won very easily on the all-weather and could be one for a decent handicap before the year is out.
Boccaccio (trained by Charlie Appleby)
Won twice last year when scoring at Yarmouth but BOCCACCIO didn’t reappear until winning again at Kempton in November, when he bolted in by three and a half lengths. He’s rated 95 and held an entry at one stage in the Irish 2,000 Guineas. He mightn’t turn up there on June 14, but this Dubawi colt looks to have a big future.
Goshen (trained by Gary Moore)
GOSHEN was going to hack up in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham, but tipped up at the last. He’s only rated 88 on the Flat and his trainer Gary Moore has already said that he’s planning a campaign for him on the level this summer. That mark won’t be wasted as he looks to have a high cruising speed and can gallop some of these more exposed staying handicappers into the ground.
Fox Tal (trained by Andrew Balding)
They only got two runs into FOX TAL last season, so there’s not much mileage on the clock. He finished fourth in the Champion Stakes at Ascot and was third in the Group 1 Criterium de Saint Cloud as a two-year-old the season before. He could be interesting when stepped up in trip this season.
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