It's a bumper day of racing and our expert has come up some cracking bets.
ACTIVE SPIRIT (best price 2/1)
proved that his 33/1 shock victory over Godolphin hotpot Blue Creek was no fluke by following up in equally impressive fashion last time out and even though those two performances have been gained in non-carnival events, Doug Watson’s charge is fancied to make the transfer to this better company a smooth one. Furthermore, the son of Pivotal has clocked two very smart times into the bargain and with his front running tactics also well suited to this dirt surface, it all adds up for the improving five-year-old to complete the hat trick.
Active Spirit - 1pt @ 2/1Lost -1pt
Vazaro Delafayette has clearly got a decent engine but his tendency to jump out to his right is becoming an ongoing concern and with that in mind, he’s passed over in favour of HOLLOW BLUE SKY (best price 9/4)
. Nigel Twiston-Davies’ inmate arrives here off the back of seasons-best performance when chasing home subsequent Catterick scorer Gonalston Cloud at Donny last time out and with the speed figure of that heat suggesting it was an even more praiseworthy effort than at first thought, the son of Turgeon can benefit from the drop in trip and previous course knowledge.
Hollow Blue Sky - 1pt @ 9/4Lost -1pt
The combination of been given a bit too much to do and racing over a trip which slightly stretched his stamina turned out to be the undoing of ALMOST GEMINI (best price 4/1)
at Musselburgh last time, but returning to the scene of one of his best performances this season should see Kenneth Slack’s charge go close in this competitive handicap. Sandwiched in between those two efforts was a victory at the Edinburgh venue over his optimum trip and this smooth-travelling and versatile character rates a decent each-way bet around the 4/1 mark.
Almost Gemini - 1pt e/w @ 4/1Won 4.8pt
Although arguably slightly better over 7f, SAFETY CHECK (best price 11/8)
still looks the one to be with in his bid to go back-to-back in this corresponding race. Using the same platform as he did last season, Charlie Appleby’s inmate started his carnival campaign in the best possible fashion with a smooth win in the Al Fahidi Fort 35 days ago, showing his customary turn of foot to run down his field in the last two furlongs. As the overall and sectional times of that performance read well, the son of Dubawi looks booked to take his Meydan turf record to a perfect 5-5.
If there is to be a upset, CHAMPIONSHIP (best price 16/1)
looks one of the few equipped to cause such a shock and he’s worth a small saver just in case things go wrong with the jolly. Very useful in his day, the Exceed And Excel gelding looked back to somewhere near his best after a long layoff over this course three weeks ago and as the speed gun clocked him posting 34 and change from the three pole, that final sectional compares favourably with the one Safety Check put on the board on his return to action.
Safety Check - 2pt @ 11/8Won 2.76pt
Championship - 0.5pt e/w @ 16/1Lost -1pt
As Sir Maximillian proved here last week, those that have finished within hailing distance of the best sprinter seen at the carnival so far, Ertijaal, are worth following blindly and NAADIRR (NAP) (best price 5/2)
has to come into that category having caught the eye behind Ali Al Raihe’s charge 21 days ago. Making his carnival debut and racing over an inadequate trip, Marco Botti’s inmate was noted doing some good late work in that strongly-run and keenly-contested 5f dash and given that he raced on the wrong side of the track for majority of the race and was also slightly hampered in the run, the performance can be upgraded even further. Racing back over a more suitable trip and drawn next to perennial trail-blazer Caspian Prince, the son of Oasis Dream should get the perfect tow into the race and make his telling turn of foot count in the latter stages.
Naadirr - 4pt @ 5/2Lost -4pt