One thing that Keith Dalgleish has clearly inherited from his former boss Mark Johnston is the ability to improve horses acquired from other stables and there is every reason to hope that we have still not seen the best of Sindarban who is fancied to complete a hat trick in the Ripon Bell-Ringer Handicap (3.45) at Ripon on Saturday.
The Teofilo gelding joined Dalgleish for a Flat campaign after winning a maiden hurdle for Donald McCain at Kelso in October of last year and made an immediate impact for his new handler when, despite being headstrong, he made all for a head victory from the William Haggas-trained Fastnet Rock in a respectable time.
Dalgleish immediately earmarked Sindarban for the Cumberland Plate over a mile and three furlongs at Carlisle the following month for his next assignment and he proved well up to that task, when despite meeting trouble in running, he ran out an impressive length and a quarter winner from Modernism with the 5-2 favourite Masterpaver a length and a quarter back in third, Top Of The Glas three quarters of length further adrift in fourth and Two Jabs a length and a half back in fifth.
The quartet that finished behind the selection all acquitted themselves well in decent handicaps next time and the handicapper appears to have given Sindarban a chance with a rise of only 6lb from his winning mark of 85 at Carlisle.
Further investigation of his form shows that he was beaten only two and three quarter lengths by Assign at level weights in a mile and a quarter maiden at the Curragh in August 2014 when trained by Mick Halford and that horse went to follow up off a mark of 95 at the Curragh next time and that makes the pudding look even tastier for eating.
Sindarban could find extra improvement for the step up to a mile and a half and with the ground looking most likely to stay on the fast side of good he looks worth a 1pt investment.
At Newbury, it could pay to side with Scottish in the Bet365 Stakes (3.00) on only his second outing for Charlie Appleby.
Another son of Teofilo, Scottish no doubt gave the locals plenty to cheers about when beating Mutakayyef a neck with Exosphere two lengths back in third when landing the Listed Doonside Cup over a mile and a quarter at Ayr last September.
Mutakkayef has won his last two starts this season and collected the Group 2 Summer Mile at Ascot last week and Exosphere underlined the value of the form when taking the Group 2 Jockey Club Stakes on his reappearance at Newmarket at the end of April.
Scottish joined Godolphin afterwards and ran creditable first race for the boys in blue when third, beaten four and three quarter lengths, in the Group 3 Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown in May and, with the decent ground at Newbury playing to his strengths, he also looks worth a 1pt investment.