Paddy has put his hand into the sponsorship pot for another big handicap with the 2020 Paddy Power Irish Cambridgeshire coming under orders on Friday.
There’s only one place to start in a competitive handicap like this and that’s by looking at some of the historical trends, starting with the draw.
Just three of the previous 11 winners were drawn in a single digit stall. However, that higher draw bias might be reversed this year to focus on those drawn low to middle considering the soft ground conditions with further rain forecast.
It’s worth noting that two of those three winners were drawn low when securing victory with considerable soft ground in the going description namely Hint Of A Tint in 2015 and Punch Your Weight in 2012.
Age profile & weight carried
Another interesting trend is the poor strike-rate for three-year-olds in the contest. Only four of the previous 20 winners were three-year-olds, while only three of the past 10 winners carried more than 9st to victory.
Unsurprisingly, there have been a fair share of double-digit winners in this competitive contest with 11 of the last 20 winners having a Starting Price (SP) of between 10/1 and 20/1.
So the big question remains who wins the 2020 Paddy Power Irish Cambridgeshire on Friday?
Impressive Curragh winner Flaming Moon has gone up 8lbs for his success over So Suave earlier this month over course and distance. Declan McDonagh takes over the ride from Robbie Colgan.
Reigning Irish champion jockey Colin Keane rides Laughifuwant for his father, Gerard, and looks another lively contender. The five-year-old was only beaten three lengths into eighthp place on his comeback run behind Current Option at Galway and has good form from last season. .
Last season’s champ Jassaar is looking for back-to-back victories for Dermot Weld while Quizical, Agitare, High Altitude, Trading Point and Strongbowe are a few others who could challenge.
However, the Adrian McGuinness team run three this year with SIRJACK THOMAS getting the each-way verdict where Paddy is paying the first 6 home.
This five-year-old fits many of the trends under 3lb claimer Gavin Ryan and returns quickly following a fourth-place finish as a beaten favourite behind High Altitude at Killarney last week when slightly slowly away.
Despite having a lot of racing since action returned this season, his winning performance at Galway puts him right in the mix here, having finished a staying on ninth behind Jassaar in this race 12 months ago. The grey son of Fast Company runs off a 1lb lower mark than last year (now rated 88) and will appreciate the underfoot conditions.
His drawn in stall 11 gives Ryan options to secure a good position to challenge late and go much closer than last year at a decent each-way price. Stablemate Saltonstall is another runner for the Lusk based trainer with Stephen Mooney taking off 7lbs aboard the dual winner at the Galway Festival.
He just saw off one of the ante-post favourites for this race at Galway in Jessica Harrington’s Njord who under Shane Foley now has to give weight away to the entire field, but comes here in very consistent form.
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