Our horse racing expert Andy Holding is back with three tips for today's racing, including runner at Punchestown and two runners at Wolverhampton.
HAPPY DEX (best price 9-4) lacked the sort of basic speed to cope with the potentially very smart Dinoblue on her rules debut at Clonmel, but with today’s step up in trip seen as a sound option not only for her here today but for going forward, Gordon Elliott’s mare should find the more serine environment a good deal more to her liking second time around.
Workmanlike rather than flashy when scoring on her rules debut in a bumper at Fairyhouse, this former point winner was sent straight over hurdles on her next outing at the Powerstown Park venue and even though at the time in might have been a disappointment to her supporters and connections alike that she could on finish fourth, the speed figure from the race that day suggested she’d run a good deal better than first feared. The winner clocked the best number for any mares’ novice either side of the Irish Sea so far this season and when you also consider that on the final circuit, they were trapping along over seven seconds quicker than the 2m4f conditions hurdle won by the 156-rated chaser, Cash Back (the well-regarded Classic Getaway in second), it puts into perspective the baptism of fire she faced in her new discipline first time off the bat. In hindsight, a sharp two miles - certainly at that sort of fractions – was always going to find out a mare ostensibly regarded as a stayer, but today’s race should turn out to be a totally different ball game in terms of pace and she’s strongly fancied to prove she still remains a lovely prospect in the making.
ZAIN SARINDA (best price 11-4) ran a race full of promise in a hot maiden at Kempton on debut two months ago and with the today’s extra yardage likely to bring about even further improvement, Tom Clover’s colt has to go into the conversation of who is likely to come out on top in this similar contest.
Rearing in the stalls before the gates opened, the son of Churchill actually jumped pretty cleanly despite his antics and he raced fairly prominently throughout the first half a mile. Turning for home on the shoulders of the leaders, he loomed up looking a real threat going towards the intersection, but at was at this point where his lack of experience told. Momentarily outpaced, he took a while to gather top gear, but once he managed to work out what was required, he came home to good effect just behind the main players. Although the overall time figures weren’t the best on the card, the backend sectionals were by some way, so having proven he can quicken well off a slow pace, hopefully this scopey three-year-old can translate that sort of basis speed into a likely stronger run environment second time around.
The assessor has tried to seek some sort of revenge on ALMUFEED (best price 2-1) after his demolition job here last time out, but the figures strongly suggest he may have still underestimated Sean Curran’s gelding despite the 7lb rise and he’s fancied to press home that viewpoint in his return to the Midland track.
Extremely well supported in the late market flourishes, the son of Mukhadram was bounced out the gate by Grace McEntee with a good degree of intent and at no point did the pair ever look remotely in danger of defeat. Bowling along at a sound gallop from the start, the five-year-old maintained the gallop all the way to the line and such was his superiority, he could be afforded to be eased down close home. Whether putting in that sort of huge effort has a detrimental effect on him here today is the only question mark, but he is a big robust unit so hopefully that won’t turn out to be the case.