He has run well on all four starts at this course, albeit a while ago now, and they included two placed efforts in a Hennessy. He is well into the veteran stage now, hence his appearance in this race, but he showed a lot more when second to runaway winner Houblon Des Obeaux at Sandown in January and he should be pretty competitive here if running to a similar level. He has dropped down to a mark which reflects his age, but hopefully not his ability.
He was down to run at Newbury on Friday but, luckily for me, he comes here. He is 3lb wrong at the weights, so that isn’t ideal, and has been doing much of his racing over the minimum trip. But he ran well over 2m3f in heavy ground at Haydock over hurdles a couple of seasons ago and comes here in good nick, and he has also run okay in his two starts at the track. He could do with the forecast rain, though.
I thought he shaped far better than his performances would suggest before he went to Sandown last time and thankfully I was proved right as he won really well there. He has paid for the win with a 9lb rise in the weights, but I’d be disappointed if there isn’t more to come from him. I think he should handle this better ground okay, for all that he likes it soft, but he clearly meets a better class of rivals here in this 0-140 handicap and the step back down to 2m may not be ideal. Let’s see, though, and any rain would be a plus.
I thought he would go better than he did at Market Rasen last time but maybe the step up to 2m4f may explain that, for all he had his grounding in points. The return to the minimum trip could be a positive then, and he races off a 4lb lower mark here. He certainly looks fairly weighted on his earlier second to a good horse over 2m at Lingfield, and this track will suit him better than Market Rasen.
He joined us after being bought for a fair sum at the sales in December, so he hasn’t been with Fergal too long. But we really like what we have seen of him, that’s for sure. He is related to some decent winners, and won his only point back in December, too. He is a horse we rate but, of course, this race is full of similar types to him and it looks a strong contest.
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