In-form Andy Holding turns his eye to Thursday's racing at Southwell, Newbury and Chelmsford.
RUBIS (best price 13/2)
caught the eye with the way she finished off her race on debut at Wolverhampton and as such, is worth chancing that she adapts to the fibresand at the first time of asking. Well behind after a tardy start at the Dunstall Park venue, Richard Fahey’s inmate picked up really takingly in the latter stages of what was a very strongly-run maiden and on the evidence of that initial display, the daughter of Monsieur Bond should be suite by an extra furlong.
Rubis - 0.5pts e/w @ 13/2
Dan Skelton has made no secrets of how much he regards VALUE AT RISK (best price 3/1)
and this big, imposing type gets a chance to vindicate his trainer’s beliefs on his eagerly-awaited chase debut. Impressing with the manner of his victory on his first start for the Warwickshire handler over hurdles here last season, the son of Kayf Tara worked his way through to the Albert Bartlett at the Cheltenham Festival, where he ran a fine race to finish a creditable fifth behind Martello Castle. Despite that excellent effort, his trainer was slightly disappointed with that return, citing that he felt he never really had him right after that initial run at Newbury and he would be a much bigger and stronger horse this term. Hopefully those sentiments prove correct that this contest looks the ideal starting point for a novice of his potential and he makes plenty of appeal at the prices despite not having faced a fence in public.
Value At Risk - 1pt @ 3/1
CHTIBELLO (best price 11/4)
gave Altior an almighty fright at Ascot last time out and with Nicky Henderson’s charge going on to land a Grade 2 at Cheltenham subsequently, it’s probably safe to say the son of Sageburg brings the best recent form to the table. On top of the impressive visual impression the front pair created that day at the Berkshire venue – pulling 20 lengths clear of the rest - the time of the race was almost two seconds quicker than the 132-rated Nabucco who took the 2m handicap an hour later on the same card, so we are obviously dealing with a couple of above-average performers. As the winner is now rated 147, Dan Skelton’s charge doesn’t appear too badly treated off a mark 10lb lower on his first foray into handicap company and despite the deteriorating ground being the only slight issue for this pacey sort, he may have enough quality to pull through on this occasion.
Chtibello - 1pt @ 11/4
DANISH DUKE (best price 9/1)
faced an impossible task trying to concede weight away to the rapidly-improving Tiger’s Home here last time, but as there doesn’t appear to be anything of that standard lurking among today’s opponents, Ruth Carr’s inmate makes quite a bit of appeal in this similar race. Considering that was his first attempt on the fibresand surface, there’s a fair chance he will improve for the experience and from his good pitch out wide, the Duke Of Marmalade gelding should be in the mix if that turns out to be the case.
Danish Duke - 0.5pts e/w @ 9/1
MAKE MUSIC (best price 9/2)
posted her best speed figure so far to date when chasing home the potentially smart Eternally in a strongly-run maiden at Wolverhampton last time out and she can put her valuable experience to good use from her favoured inside draw. Prior to that smart effort, Andrew Balding’s charge had occupied the same position behind the equally promising Bedrock in a similar contest at Newbury and a repeat of either performance make her a sure-fire bet to hit the frame here at the very least.
Make Music - 1pt e/w @ 9/2
EPSOM DAY (NAP) (best price 11/8)
left the impression he would have won comfortably with anything like a clearer run through last time out at Wolverhampton and he gets the chance to put that theory to the test racing off the same mark. Ridden by Tom Queally at the Dunstall Park venue, Frankel’s pilot would have to agree it probably wasn’t his finest hour on John Gosden’s charge as he sent the son of Teofilo down every blind alley available. Replaced by Robert Havlin this evening, hopefully the stable jockey doesn’t get into the same sort of trouble because he appears to be riding a horse way ahead of his handicap mark based on the findings of that unlucky effort last time out.
Epsom Day - 2pts @ 11/8