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Having been sent off at odds on, SMULLEN was a little disappointing at Pontefract on debut but, with the benefit of that experience plus a gelding operation, he could prove a different proposition at the second time of asking. As such, he’s preferred to Highland Premiere, with Yeeeaah the pick of the newcomers on paper.
Conditions were testing when LIGHTENING COMPANY made a winning debut (a rare winning newcomer for his yard) over a trip just shy of 7f at Carlisle. However, there’s no real reason to believe that he won’t prove equally effective at this trip on better ground and he earns the vote. With General Sago due to run at Ripon on Wednesday evening, Cooperation is clear second choice ahead of Bannow.
It will be disappointing should MIQUELON fail to deliver, having chased home above-average types in a Wetherby novice and Wolverhampton maiden on his 2 starts for this yard. The drop to this trip should be in his favour given that he’s clearly not short of speed. There were positives to glean from Glen Lomond’s debut effort and he is preferred to newcomer Mehraki Star for forecast purposes.
DANZAN arrives on the back of a terrific effort when second at York and is fancied to go one better in this less competitive affair. Recent C&D winner Illusionist is thriving and poses an obvious threat, while Call Me Ginger (who was second in the same race), isn’t a forlorn hope despite being out of the weights.
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A leap of faith is required in supporting PADDYPLEX given the length of his losing run. However, he’s tumbled down the weights and very much caught the eye when third over 8.3f here 3 weeks ago, noted finishing full of running on the back of a tardy start. He shades the vote to confirm the promise of that run, with Jackhammer and Regal Mirage expected to also be firmly in the mix.
MILLIE THE MINX had a productive time over hurdles earlier this year and proved better than ever in this sphere when second at this course last week. She can land the spoils. Socks Off and Misscarlett can also make their presence felt.
This can go to MR WAGYU, who ran well in a deeper contest last time and has dropped back to a handy mark. Nubough and Ey Up Its Mick look the likeliest dangers.
LADY CELIA added to her fine record at this course when a close third last week and can race off same mark again. She is fancied to land the finale. Buniann is feared most.
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