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Alflaila was drawn out wide at York last time over 7f and did remarkably well to finish as close as he did in second. Lots of these are on top of each other from a ratings perspective, but he has been underestimated by the assessor for me. Added to that, he is likely to be the second string for the owners Shadwell Estates and should go off at double-digit odds.
Armor looked nothing short of spectacular when winning at the Glorious Goodwood meeting and proved it was no fluke with a very solid effort up at Group 1 level in France last time, where he just failed to see out the 6f. Back to the minimum 5f trip now looks an ideal move for an outfit that has a strong juvenile team to go to war with. He’s an easy pick at the top of the market, but do keep a close eye on The Organiser as he may be overpriced.
Stradivarius managed to win this in 2019 and given the forecast ground conditions, it may be that his main rival Trueshan may well not turn up for the fight, although heavy showers are forecast. The Gosden-trained legend has all the bases covered and might have most to fear from the lightly-weighted Alerta Roja if Trueshan is absent. The reverse forecast looks the bet as she’s a danger in receipt of 18lbs. The yard won this with a similar type in 2001 with Alleluia.
Sovereign Duke looks for all the world as if he was going to make a very tidy hurdler, but quite clearly didn’t take to it at all. He switched back to Henry Candy’s yard again and he has taken only a couple of runs to find his form. He is well weighted on his form when previously trained by this handler and the addition of Saffie Osborne in the saddle only adds to the interest, lightening the burden by a further 5lbs. He’s an each-way play.
Asjad looked really good winning his first two starts in smooth fashion and it was only a messy three runner contest that put a dent in his 100 per cent record. He can get firmly back on track now and looks to be underestimated off a mark of just 96. His course form is very strong and stepping up to the intermediate distance of six and a half furlongs will prove no problem.
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