At first glance ANOTHER BATT (Best price 7-1) looks exposed, but he improved again on the clock when narrowly beaten at Ascot stepping up to seven furlongs for the first time and already boasts experience of today’s track when a staying-on third to the classy Madeline over six furlongs here last month. The selection won’t mind if the odd shower hits Berkshire and looks the each-way play in the race if all eight remain with the layers likely to underestimate his claims. Frankel colt Learn By Heart is rather diminutive, but he was strong at the finish at Doncaster. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been a winner emerge from that race in 10 outings since so the form could be weak.
Victory for Frankuus in last weekend’s Rose of Lancaster Stakes at Haydock paid a handsome compliment to DEFOE (Best price 7-4) who beat the son of Frankel cosily in Listed company at Hamilton last month. Fourth-home Euro Nightmare has also easily lifted a handicap subsequently to strengthen the form and Roger Varian’s improving three-year-old raced a shade lazily at Hamilton, leaving the impression there was more to come when he steps up again in trip. An impressive winner of a handicap here earlier this season, Defoe has the opportunity to prove his St Leger credentials today at the expense of a proven Group performer in Frontiersman who hung away a golden opportunity at Newmarket last time.
No one could accuse SUN LOVER (Best price 9-2) of being the punters’ friend, given he has been made market leader on his last four starts and has delivered just once at even money. However, he was beaten by a horse in Classic Seniority at Doncaster last month who went on to land a well-contested Hamilton handicap on his next start so the form may not be too shabby and his speed figures this season would entitle him to win a race of this nature. Noble Peace again acquitted himself well when runner-up to Truth Or Dare at Goodwood and looks likely to go well again providing stall one isn’t an awkward berth.
There is every chance backing LIBRISA BREEZE (Best price 5-2) could prove something of a white knuckle ride for his supporters given his run style. Precious little went right for Dean Ivory’s gelding in the Lennox Stakes at Goodwood, yet he was only beaten four lengths by Breton Rock despite suffering a tortuous passage in the straight. Connections of the talented grey will be praying for a genuine gallop from the likes of Kaspersky to give their exuberant five-year-old a chance to settle and something to run at late on. Hopefully, the pace collapses late on and Librisa Breeze can showcase his trademark turn of foot and secure a first Group win.
Dark Power is the upwardly mobile sprinter in the field and could take a 15lb rise for Nottingham and Leicester victories in his lengthy stride. He is a hard horse to knock especially given the gift his trainer boasts in dealing with horses in this sphere. However, he is likely to be found by the layers and last year’s first and third in Syrian Pearl and CASE KEY (Best price 8-1) could offer stiff resistance. Syrian Pearl is back down to the same mark as 12 months ago and looks to have had this race as her objective all season for a stable that have struck form with a vengeance in the past fortnight. In contrast, Case Key has been in pretty decent form all summer and finished in front of Syrian Pearl at Yarmouth last time when bumping into Hart Stopper so just gains the nod as the each-way alternative.
VICTORY ANGEL (Best price 8-1) appeared to resent being fitted with the first-time visor when disappointing in the well-contested C&D sprint won by Ekhtiyaar last month. However, the selection was highly impressive at Yarmouth when routing a reasonable field, clocking a big number in the process and is fancied to continue his resurgent form. ULTIMATE AVENUE (Best price 15-2) looks a huge danger as he should really have beaten Ekhtiyaar and Tommy Taylor in that warm event but the gaps didn’t materialise for Jamie Spencer. He was withdrawn at York recently because of soft ground and should appreciate the drying conditions with Pat Cosgrave enlisted.