As his career record suggests, LINE OF REASON (NAP) (best price 7-4) often comes good at this time of year (six of his eight wins have come in June and July) and following his impressive victory in a very fast time at Beverley last time out, Paul Midgley’s charge rates a decent bet to supplement those gains. Always travelling sweetly off the back of sound fractions set up by Red Pike, the son of Kheleyf quickened up nicely in the closing stages to put the race to bed inside the distance and even though he carried his head a little awkwardly towards the finish, that trait is just a part of his complex character rather than any worrying undercurrent. At his best when racing over a stiff 5f on fast ground, hopefully one of his opponents will make this a decent test which will allow his trademark turn of foot to come to fruition in the final furlong.
Fergal O’Brien may not have had ANNIE ALAINN (best price 8-1) long enough to make a massive impact on her well-being, but based on the pick of her best form in Ireland, she has every chance of making a decent start for new connections. A three-time winner in her native homeland, the daughter of Beneficial showed all her brave, battling qualities to get the job done at Wexford four starts ago and although she’s failed in her bid to add to that victory in three subsequent starts, each performance in defeat has been worthy of the utmost respect. Best on genuine soft ground, the forecast for today should see the underfoot conditions remain quite testing at the Midland venue and although she clearly faces stiff competition from the likes of in-form mare, May Hay and the potentially well treated Tiger Trek (may require better ground), she rates the value bet in the race at 13-2.