Our horse racing expert Andy Holding has three tips for today's action, including a NAP at Nottingham.
STRONGBOWE (NAP) (best price 15-8) looked a sprinter for whom everything has just clicked into place at Thirsk last time out and with the strong possibility of even more to come from this lightly-raced five-year-old, it makes perfect sense to keep him on side for the foreseeable future.
An eye-catcher on his previous start at the Yorkshire venue, Tim Easterby’s gelding was made a warm favourite on his return visit two weeks later and despite giving away ground early with a slow start, he came through strongly in the latter stages to score with seemingly plenty in hand. Posting one of the fastest time figures on the card, his backend splits were also very good, and considering he could be afforded the luxury of being eased down in the final 50yds, the handicapper was well within his rights to go harder than he actually did. Still eligible for 0-80’s, the son of Siyouni is given another opportunity to stand out at this level and providing he’s ridden in a similar fashion to what he was nine days ago, it would be a shade disappointing if he didn’t repeat the dose.
TARAASHOQ (best price 9-4) shaped quite well in a race which is already turning out to look a strong maiden and with just normal improvement, William Haggas’ inmate is expected to play a more pivotal role this time around.
Gelded since finishing well down the field on debut last season, the son of Maxios wasn’t expected to make an immediate impact on his return to action after 227-days off the track, and although that notion partly came true at Leicester earlier in the month, his performance was still good enough for him to at least come into the conversation about him landing a similar contest further down the line. In what turned out to be a very strongly run affair for the race type, he managed to go with the main players until lack of an outing took its toll and when you consider his stable mate, Baaeed, was knocking out the sort of fractions in the latter stages which suggested he was a pattern-race performer in the making, it makes it even more understandable why he was made to look a little one-paced. Not only as the winner gone in again – and impressively at that – the runner-up, Tamaamm, has also paid a handsome complement to the form and even though suspicions are normally raised when such a runner is having potentially his third run for a handicap mark, hopefully in his case, that won’t come to pass as it’s a race well within his compass based on the figure he achieved last time out.
Good-to-firm ground and today’s C&D allowed NIGHT OF ROMANCE (best price 4-1) to get off the mark at the ninth time of asking last time out and it what appears to be a pretty similar task on paper, there’s no reason why Karl Burke’s filly won’t put up another bold bid.
Only out of the money once previously when she failed to stay a stiff mile at Newcastle, the daughter of Night Of Thunder was given the chance to race back on turf at the Midland track 23 days ago and having travelled strongly from the start, she found plenty at the business end to fend off the well-fancied, and previous winner, Silent Flame. Clocking a heathy time figure, it’s good to see the form already beginning to work out well with the fourth winning since, and with the combination of good tactical six-furlong speed and the ability to stay further her main attributes, hopefully those key components will come to the fore again this evening.