Nigel Tinkler might have gone down the Flying Childers route with his progressive juvenile Acklam Express but it might be a good bit of placing to pitch him into open company where he is in receipt of a huge amount of weight from all bar one of his rivals.
He won on his second start after showing promise on debut when a huge price and then bolted in at Goodwood on nursery debut off a mark of 77.
He won at Listed level last time and though that might not have been the strongest race, he went reasonably hard in front that day and did well to hang on in the circumstances and the time didn’t compare too badly to the five furlong handicap on the card either.
He is in receipt of at least a stone from all bar fellow juvenile Country Carnival and with the master of Doncaster booked, (Andrea Atzeni) he might be able to surprise the older generation here.
Hammer Gun has really struggled on his three starts since the resumption of racing but the return to Doncaster and the step up to a mile might see him regain his form.
He was only just touched off in this race last year when a well supported favourite and he came into the race off the back of a seventh place at 50/1 and an eighth place at 50/1, so perhaps his form figures this time round aren’t as worrying as you may think.
He also won twice here last season over both seven furlongs and a mile, so clearly this track plays to his strengths. With Paddy giving five places here, he makes some each way appeal to small stakes.
Jubiloso was really disappointing on her reappearance at Royal Ascot, which was following up from a really poor effort on her final start last season, and now has a bit to prove for me. She looks worth opposing with Althiqa who looks quite progressive.
A winner on her only start as a juvenile last season, she followed up on her reappearance at Newmarket and was unlucky when third at Listed level at Haydock when she didn’t get the best of runs.
She won a Listed race in France, before a really solid 3rd to One Master at Group 3 level at Goodwood, with subsequent Group 3 winner Breathtaking Look behind her in fourth.
Althiqa was second at Group 3 level in France on her last start, where she had the re-opposing Cloak Of Spirits behind her. The bit of better ground here should be to her benefit and she looks sure to run well with Paddy giving an extra place to those who want to play each way.
Starcat was an impressive winner on debut at Kempton last December and didn’t shape too badly when midfield in the 2,000 Guineas on his reappearance.
The soft ground might have been against him when he was prominent in the market of for the Britannia at Royal Ascot but I think he shaped better than his position suggest when 5th last time at Glorious Goodwood, stepped up to ten furlongs for the first time.
Help up last he was always travelling well but when the pace increased, jockey Oisin Murphy decided to go up the rail instead of coming down the outside. He met a little trouble up the rail and had to switch again before running on late.
He has a tongue tie added today and the Hughie Morrison yard are in decent form, so I think everything is in place for Starcat to run a big race.
Mid Winster makes her first start for Paul Midgely from Andy Slattery and makes some appeal from a mark of 76 if the switch of stables can reinvigorate her.
She was good enough to a win a maiden at the Curragh as a two year old and won a Fairyhouse handicap last season off a mark of 82.
She has been out of form this season but her first three runs were off a mark of 89 and she showed far more when 7th, beaten under two lengths at Dundalk on her final start off a mark of 81.
Paul Midgely is a real dab hand with this sprinting types and if she is fully wound up on her first start for him, she might be able to regain the winning thread.
This is a very weak handicap hurdle and Employer looks worth chancing now going handicapping for the first time over hurdles.
He hasn’t been sighted on his three qualifying runs but he was quite useful on the flat last season when trained by Jim Goldie, hitting the frame from a mark as high as 83 but being very competitive off marks in the mid 70’s.
His opening hurdles mark is 81 and if he could run to anywhere near his flat mark he would take a bit of beating here.
Frank’s tips for racing on Wednesday
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