Andy Holding was in great form yesterday and he's got five bets for today.
NEDDYVAUGHAN (NAP) (best price 3-1)finally accomplished what he’d threatened to do on several previous starts when bounding to victory over today’s C&D here last week and with his confidence hopefully well and truly boosted by that easy success, Christy Roche’s charge is fancied to go in again. Having not got home when looking all over the winner at Fairyhouse the time before, the key to his winning performance seven days ago was clearly down to the combination of being held up a little longer and the drop back down to the minimum trip and with conditions looking set fair for the son of St Jovite again today, he rates the best bet on the card.
ALRAASED (best price 8-1) had little chance of getting home after setting off as if his tail was on fire here two starts ago, but there’s a decent chance he can utilise that early speed now he’s dropping back down to a distance more in-keeping with his run-style. Back to his best when more conservatively ridden over 6f at Sharjah last time out, he not only has a decent draw around the inside to help his cause on his return to the dirt, but he also has the services of a very promising apprentice who has been seen to good effect on several rides out in the desert so far this campaign (two winners and a third from three rides).
In what looks a mind-numbingly difficult heat, CHEVALIER (best price 15-2) and FORCEFUL APPEAL (best price 9-1) are the two suggestions against the field. The former ran really well on only his fourth start for rookie handler Archie Watson over today’s C&D 10 days ago and given that performance came off the back of a 60-day break and he was posted out wide from his coffin box draw, his effort in finishing second to the well-placed Pactolus, deserves upgrading. The latter doesn’t exactly jump off the page with uninspiring form figures of late, but there may be a chink of light at the end of the tunnel based on his latest effort over this track. Being a mile specialist, it was no great surprise, therefore, to see Simon Dow’s inmate get outpaced in the early stages, but it was encouraging to note him doing some good late work down the lane and he might have finished a little closing to the main protagonists had he not him a brick wall inside the final furlong. Well handicapped on the pick of his old form, a chance is taken he can build on his latest effort and outrun his odds over a C&D where he’s scored twice in the past.
Having run well over a trip that she found a bit on the sharp side here last time out, TITAN GODDESS (best price 8-1) is taken to regain the winning threat back over a mile. Staying on strongly in the latter stages of a well-run affair won by subsequent scorer Pearl Spectre, Mike Murphy’s charge gave out clear signals that she’s could well be in for a productive winter and given that she drops backs down a level from class 4 company, she makes plenty of each-way appeal at her top morning odds.