I sat on him for the first time in about three years in Meydan, and to be honest he didn’t show a great deal in both of his outings there. They were his first starts since joining David from Ed Dunlop, but hopefully we will see his true worth now he is back in the country. He didn’t have the most consistent profile when with Ed, when tried in blinkers and a visor, but he was a pretty smart handicapper on his day, and to be fair he was in good form at the start of last season. He only just got touched off at Glorious Goodwood and wasn’t beaten far off 105 at Sandown in August, and he has come down to a mark of 97 after a series of modest efforts since. He is weighted to go well if back to his best and is fairly drawn in six – and he also finished a good second in the 1m4f handicap at this meeting last season – but he wouldn’t want too much more rain. In fact, he would not like it one bit.
Ride Like The Wind
I don’t know why he was a non-runner in the Victoria Cup on Saturday, but presumably all is well with him, and I think he has the potential to make his mark off 102 stepping into handicap company for the first time. A long delay in the stalls counted against him at Lingfield on his first start for Kevin in February – he got worked up there – and I suppose on the face of it he was a little disappointing in the Cammidge Trophy at Doncaster last time, though he didn’t shape too badly for me there and I actually think I may have finished second or third had I not been stopped in my run. He has been dropped 3lb to a mark of 102 and that looks workable on his good French form, and the more rain the better for him. Soft ground would be a big positive for him and I can see him putting up an improved showing here.
He undoubtedly has the talent to be winning races off 85, but he is a very tricky customer who often blows his chance at the start. But if he can get off on terms and is on his best behaviour, then he has to have chances here. He did very well to finish sixth at Goodwood last summer considering everything went wrong for him there, and he is 2lb lower here, though if York does get a lot more rain then that is a question he has to answer. I suspect he would hate soft ground.
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