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LOUIE DE PALMA was below his best last season, but his mark has dropped as a consequence and he is interesting on his return from an eight-month break. This is a much weaker handicap than the events often contested by Louie de Palma, and he can make his class tell. Louie de Palma has run well fresh and at this venue, so he can take advantage of this opportunity.
GENERAL PANIC sets a good standard for his rivals to aim at and he could prove difficult to beat. He made the perfect start at Southwell last month, giving his trainer Sean Woods a first winner since returning to Britain.
He produced an even better effort in defeat next time at Wolverhampton, when only narrowly denied by Navello. General Panic ran to a similar level when third in a Newmarket novice last time and that is the best form on offer.
ROBBIE ROGER failed to meet expectations when third behind General Panic on debut at Southwell, but he is entitled to improve for that experience and is of obvious interest for George Boughey – who has done brilliantly with his two-year-olds this season.
Robbie Roger was a well-backed 6/5 favourite on debut, indicating that he had been going well at home, but he was possibly disadvantaged by racing against the near-side rail. He may also have been in need of the run, so it would be little surprise were he to take a big step forward.
JAWWAAL looked a touch rusty on his return at Beverley last month, but he produced a more encouraging effort when in mid-division in an ultra-competitive handicap at York last time. Jawwaal impressed with how much speed he showed, tanking along behind the leaders.
He looks to be building up to something. This is less competitive, and the handicapper has eased him another 2lbs, so he makes plenty of appeal.
FAISAL made the perfect start to his career last season, winning a maiden at Lingfield on debut before landing the odds at Wolverhampton. He enters handicap company on a good-looking mark and is open to plenty of improvement after only two starts, so he stands out as the one to beat. He could be a cut above these rivals.
NO DAY NEVER produced his best effort yet when fourth at Leicester on his reappearance and he is one to be interested in on the back of that promising display. No Day Never stuck to his task well from an unpromising position in that 7-furlong handicap and he should benefit from this step up in trip. It is still early days in his career, and he has more to offer.
BOOMSHALAA, a 350,000 guineas purchase as a yearling, didn’t show a great deal on his only start last season. But, he looked a really good prospect when winning on his return at Kempton last month.
Boomshalaa was up against a couple of previous winners, but he showed a good turn of foot to leave them toiling, powering four lengths clear. His form is up there with the best on offer, and he is open to further improvement for Roger Varian. There is a lot to like about his prospects.
ZIKANY was well backed ahead of his handicap debut at Lingfield earlier this month, but he had to settle for second. That was an encouraging display however, and represented an improvement on the form he had shown in novice company.
There is plenty of stamina on the dam’s side of his pedigree and he looks sure to appreciate this slight step up in trip, while the long straight here should also be in his favour. It is likely he will prove much better than this mark in time.
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