Our horse racing expert Andy Holding has four tips for today's action.
SPEEDO BOY (best price 3-1) has proved to be yet another example of how good Ian Williams’ can be with older horses and following a reward for a series of fine placed efforts at Ascot last time out, there’s no reason why the seven-year-old can’t add to his career tally.
A neck runner-up on his two previous starts, the chestnut gelding arrived at the Berkshire venue the oldest participant in a field of eight, yet he was the only one to maintain the relentless gallop set by the front running Star Caliber in the closing stages. Clearly well suited by a strongly run two miles on fast ground, today’s forecast should ensure he gets his ideal conditions and despite the steadier of top weight, the in-form veteran rates the most likely winner.
YA BOY YA (best price 4-1) put up a brave attempt to try and make all the running in a competitive handicap chase at Tipperary last time out but despite getting run out of the argument close home, it was still a performance to suggest Colin Bowe’s gelding has bright prospects of making amends in due course.
A hugely consistent performer in both disciplines, the son of Sans Frontiers has only once failed not to earn his connections a cheque and as we saw last time out, he’s more than likely to pay his way in races of today’s nature. Jumping well at the head of affairs at the Limerick Junction venue, the seven-year-old had all bar Funky Dady at full stretch throughout the final mile of keenly-contested heat and although he eventually succumbed to the winner in the final bounds, his performance deserved to be upgraded because he spent the entire race ploughing his way through the churned up ground around the inside of the track. Had he not raced in the swamp he might well have won, and with the winner and third going on to fill out the places in the valuable and competitive Galway Blazers next time out, the form of that race 26 days ago looks one of the strongest coming into today’s contest.
A cracking field assembled for this Group 3 prize and it’s one LAYFAYETTE (best price 8-1) is more than capable of making his presence felt.
Winner of the Irish Lincoln over today’s course back in March, Noel Meade’s inmate really came of age that day and his next three outings have done nothing to detract from that viewpoint. A cracking sixth in the red-hot Hunt Cup at Ascot on ground he would have found too lively two starts ago, the son of French Navy did his own bit for the strong form at the royal meeting with a victory of his own at listed level at Roscommon last time out. Much more at home over the longer trip with some ease underfoot 45 days ago, he once again proved what a versatile perform he can be, and with today’s test at a 1m2f likely to prove bang up his street, the progressive four-year-old makes plenty of appeal at his morning odds.
A trappy sprint handicap to conclude the card but SHE’S IN THE GAME (best price 6-1) is likely to have a huge say in the final argument based on all of her four performances so far this season.
A big eye-catcher on her first outing of the campaign over today’s C&D, the chestnut filly easily came out best of those who raced towards the nearside of the track and the same scenario developed at Cork last time out when once again she was unlucky to come out just the wrong side of the draw. Noted travelling very strongly towards the stands’ side rail at the Mallow track, the daughter of Starpangledbanner saw her race out all the way to the line only to find The Cola Kid had nicked a tactical advantage on a fast strip of ground over towards the far side of the course. Despite her agonising defeat, she still managed to come out of the race with a decent speed figure next to her name and providing her draw turns out to be a favourable one on her return to the Co Kildare venue (high numbers have been favoured in big-field sprints at recent meetings), she can hopefully provide her inexperienced young pilot with a breakthrough success.