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Topweight BAD COMPANY has done very well since upped to this distance and his good reappearance run at Windsor suggests he’s still improving. He has leading claims back down in grade. Noble Masquerade is second choice, ahead of Sweet Reward. Suns Up Guns Up should be thereabouts if backing up his latest effort, while market support for Thanielle should be noted.
A tricky race to call as standard setter Navello has done his winning on sharper tracks, while all of the others are promising/unexposed. Navello is progressing well and could be hard to beat if he takes to this course, but the suggestion is EBRO RIVER.
He still seemed green last time and should build on that Doncaster win. Little Earl has a similar profile to the selection and he is second choice, ahead of Chipotle.
The progressive and very solid OCEAN WIND has strong claims. Nayef Road looks the biggest threat on ratings, but Ranch Hand could also take a serious hand back at 2m.
It’s hard to get away from SANGARIUS, who has a good chance on the figures and whose trainer has a superb record in this race. The selection was only fourth in this contest last year when it was held at Haydock, but he seemed to need that reappearance run and it was a better renewal to boot (Lord North won, Elarqam finished second).
This time round he has the benefit of recent match practice and faces slightly easier opposition. Extra Elusive and Fox Tal are the main dangers, in that order.
Off his reduced mark there should be a big run in HISTORY WRITER (NAP), a course and distance winner who was third in the last running of this in 2019. His latest effort in the Victoria Cup was highly encouraging.
Ransom wasn’t seen to best effect when relinquishing his unbeaten record at Kempton and this son of Kingman retains significant potential on his turf debut. Semser is another for the shortlist, with last year’s York third for Roger Varian an eyecatching piece of form.
Not many Sandown handicaps are won with the authority that Urban Violet displayed here last week and she’s a danger to all with 6lb up her sleeve. This is certainly a stronger contest though, and FINAL WATCH is one of a few dangers after creating a likeable impression in his recent win at Newmarket. Encourage, General Lee, Buxted Too, Abrag and Grand Scheme are all of interest.
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