SADIQAA showed fairly useful form when making a winning debut at Leicester earlier this month, leading over a furlong out and just needing to be kept up to his work to land the spoils by three lengths.
That form comfortably sets the standard here on Timeform’s weight-adjusted ratings, even with a 6lb penalty taken into account, and he is hard to oppose with further progress on the cards.
GREY GALLEON proved at least as good as ever when ending his losing run at Bath last time, winning by three-and-a-quarter-lengths with plenty in hand.
That was just his third start for the in-form Roger Teal yard (five winners from his last 21 runners), and a 7lb higher mark might not be enough to prevent him from following up if arriving in the same sort of mood.
AL RUFAA produced a career best to resume winning ways at Kempton 11 days ago, drawing clear in the final furlong to win easily by four and three-quarter lengths.
The quick turnaround here is a slight concern, but he is essentially very well-in under a 6lb penalty and looks sure to take plenty of beating if running to the same level.
SPARKLING OLLY is another last-time-out winner who arrives here potentially very well treated under a 6 lb penalty.
That was her handicap debut when getting off the mark at Chepstow last week, doing so readily by two-and-a-half lengths, and she may yet have even more to offer given that it’s still early days with the Ralph Beckett yard.
NUGGET looked unlucky not to win when second on his most recent outing at Windsor, racing wide throughout and doing well under the circumstances to be beaten just a neck by one who came in for a ground-saving ride.
That still represented a career-best effort, and the fact he can race from the same mark here identifies him as very much the one to beat (due to be 5lb higher when his revised mark kicks in).
DARAIN is bred in the purple and looked an excellent prospect when making a winning debut at Newbury two weeks ago, arguably deserving of extra credit for putting distance between himself and the rest given the steady gallop.
He remains open to significant improvement and can defy a penalty here to maintain his unbeaten record on the way to bigger and better things.
BILLHILLY shaped well when third on his turf debut at Newmarket (Rowley) last time, travelling best of all before weakening in the closing stages (ultimately beaten three and a half lengths).
There may yet be even better to come from him, especially now dropping back down in trip, and he has certainly shown enough to suggest that a BHA mark of 72 isn’t beyond him.
SPECTRUM OF LIGHT could be the way to go in an open finale. He is only 4lb higher than when beaten narrowly on his handicap debut over this C&D last time, and with further improvement on the cards in first-time cheekpieces, this looks a good opportunity for him to go one better.
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