Our horse racing expert Andy Holding has four tips for today's action.
If Tim Easterby entered the stable cat he’d probably win such is the form of his stable at present and the Yorkshire handler appears to have another decent chance of adding to his already impressive tally for the season with CRAGSIDE (best price 4-1) in this modest-looking maiden.
Not particularly well fancied on his debut at Thirsk, the son of Pride Of Dubai ended up outrunning his 25-1 price tag with an eye-catching effort behind two quality performers from powerful stables and it was a display that strongly suggested he has a bright future. A big, strappy gelding with loads of scope, how many more runs he will require to get to peak fitness is anyone’s guess, but either way, he certainly has the ability to go close in a race of this nature even though he lacks the experience of favourite, Blowing Wind.
ANDALEEP (best price 9-2) took a while to find top gear this season, but now he appears to be right back in the groove, Graeme McPherson’s gelding can further add to his impressive haul at today’s track.
Other than one inexplicably poor run here earlier in the season, the five-year-old has always saved his best form for today’s C&D and his victory over Lady Reset two weeks ago took his winning tally to three. Usually dropped and saved for a late charge, the son of Siyouni should get a decent pace to shoot at courtesy of Arctic Emperor and Bad Company being in the line-up and at the morning prices, he rates by far and away the best value bet in the race.
MADE FOR MINDS (best price 11-1) shaped with a good deal more promise than the official result suggested at Limerick last time out and he rates an interesting contender on his first start in handicap company off what appears a workable mark.
Having his first run for 254 days since leaving William Haggas, the lightly-raced four-year-old was held up towards the rear of the field at the Greenmount Park track and by halfway, it was clear his chances of winning were pretty remote. He did, however, stay on in pleasing fashion in the final half a mile to finish a respectable seventh behind the useful winner Baseman, and with his backend sectionals working out quite well in comparison to some of those who finished ahead of him that day, his performance deserved to be upgraded. Whether today will be the day all the lights are flashing on green remains to be seen, but with the step up in trip on rain-softened ground threatening to bring about further improvement, it will be slightly disappointing if he doesn’t feature more prominently than he did 32 days ago.
HMS PRESIDENT (best price 5-1) was a late withdrawal from the concluding contest at Goodwood over the weekend on account of unsuitable ground, but with conditions here this evening likely to be much more to his comfort, Eve Johnson Houghton’s gelding can go well in a race at a lower level that he’s been contesting of late.
Unsuited by a mile first time out this season, the four-year-old has improved his results since being stepped back up in trip and the form of his latest effort when third at the Berkshire venue couldn’t have worked out any better. Runner-up, Alfred Boucher, landed a competitive prize at Ascot last week with a bit to spare while the likes of Dark Jedi and Flyin Solo have both made the race in question look even stronger subsequently. Back to his optimum conditions of 1m2f with some ease underfoot, the son of Excelebration comes across as a fair each-way proposition at the morning odds.