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LONGLAI showed improved form to make a successful return at Beverley in April, and he ran at least as well in defeat from a 7lbs higher mark when second at Newmarket last time. He ultimately proved no match for the winner on that occasion, but that was still another good effort as he pulled a little way clear of the rest and showed more than enough to suggest he remains a well-handicapped horse. A straightforward type, he could get an easy lead this time and looks to have plenty going for him in a wide-open contest.
GREY FOX was disappointing when down the field at Leicester last time, but it might be worth putting a line through that run on account of the soft going. He had shown what he is capable of on better ground when winning his previous start at Windsor, forging clear to land the spoils by four-and-a-quarter lengths in impressive fashion. He remains relatively unexposed and is fancied to get back on an upward curve to double his career tally.
WEE LOCH LASS produced a career best to get off the mark at Carlisle 10 days ago, hitting the front entering the final two furlongs and then finding plenty when challenged to hold on by a head. She is improving with racing and comfortably sets the standard on Timeform’s weight-adjusted ratings now dropping back into selling company, so this looks an ideal opportunity for her to follow up.
LYDFORD shaped with promise after 11 weeks off when fourth in a big-field handicap at York last time, staying on strongly in the closing stages to pass the post less than four lengths behind the winner. His strength at the finish suggests the step up to 2m here will unlock further improvement.
Meanwhile, his pedigree also provides plenty of encouragement in that respect (half-brother to the Gold Cup winner Big Orange). He looks on a good mark and could be the way to go for the Roger Varian yard which continues on a roll (75% of horses running to form).
GLOBAL WARNING has done well since joining the Chris Dwyer yard, winning twice on the all-weather and giving another good account when fourth back on turf at Ascot last month. He was beaten just a length-and-a-half on that occasion and can race from the same mark in a weaker race this time. Marco Ghiani, who has a valuable 3lbs claim, is also back in the saddle today after partnering Global Warning to his last victory at Newcastle in February.
TIGER BEETLE stepped up on his previous efforts when third at Nottingham last time, travelling fluently for a long way and keeping going well to be beaten only three lengths. The winner followed up on his next start and the fourth has also won since, so that appeals as a strong piece of form.
Tiger Beetle is certainly the one to beat in this maiden according to Timeform’s weight-adjusted ratings, while it will be no surprise if he has even more to offer after only three starts.
PROPAGATION could be the way to go in a tricky finale. He ran well after nine weeks off when second at Lingfield last time, backing up the improvement he had shown on the all-weather earlier this year. He looks well up to winning races from a BHA mark of 65 and may not need to improve much (if at all) to get off the mark in a contest where several of his rivals have questions to answer.
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