A draw in seven could have been worse, and my horse clearly comes here in great form. It was annoying when we just got touched off at the Craven meeting but he went one better at Epsom for me last time, and he did it well. He has gone up 4lb for that, which is what you’d expect, and if he handles the track then you have to give him a leading chance. Good, fast ground suits him well.
He runs off a career-high mark here, having gone up 4lb for his second to Golden Spear in Ireland last time, but his good progressive form justifies that. He will need to step forward again to win such a competitive race off this mark but his staying form last season ties in closely with all the leading players here, and he was only beaten a short-head in this race last season. In fact, I was on board No Heretic who beat him last season, so I guess I owe the owners and trainer one! He was second from stall 15 last year, so hopefully 10 here will be okay.
This looks a decent maiden but you have to give my colt a good chance back in this company. I liked him last season and he shaped really well first time out for me at Doncaster on his reappearance, so much so that connections ran him in the Epsom Derby Trial last month. He wasn’t entirely at home on the track there but it was a pretty strong race and he wasn’t disgraced, and he should be very competitive here down in class.
He doesn’t look to have an obvious chance with his outside draw and patchy recent form, most recently when only beating two home over 1m2f at Dundalk in January. But the step down to 7f is an interesting move, as a lot of his good juvenile form came over 6f and 7f, when he sometimes forced the pace as well. If he can break well and get a decent position, then he could surprise, and he looks fairly handicapped on some of his form last season for Richard Hannon.
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