14:25 Newmarket

AZURE BLUE (NAP) (best price 9/4) deserved to be seriously marked up on her recent fourth at York given how the race panned out and, having already proven that the slopes of the track at HQ hold no fears, Michael Dods’ filly rates a strong choice to make another successful raid from her Northern base.

Fourth in a hugely-competitive three-year-old sprint handicap on the July Course in the height of summer, the daughter of El Kabeir duly confirmed the impression of that run by making no mistake on her return visit later in the same month. Off the track for two months prior to her latest encounter, a slow start immediately put her on the back foot in a race where she could ill afford to give away any ground, so the fact she managed to finish as close up as she did, is testimony to her natural ability.

Moreover, had she not been asked to challenge away from the main action on the slowest part of the track, there’s little doubt she would have had a bigger say in the final argument and with the form of the race in question receiving a huge boost when the fifth home, Pink Crystal, went on to finish second in a listed race subsequently, being allowed to race off the same mark as she did on the Knavesmire has to be viewed as a huge plus. Hailing from the stable that landed this prize with Gale Force Maya last season, this consistent and likeable three-year-old holds every chance of following in her stable mate’s illustrious hoof prints.

Azure Blue - 2pts

16:20 Listowel

ONE COOL POET (best price 14/1), more renowned for his exploits over 1m4f on the Flat and over two miles over hurdles, was always likely to find the sharp mile journey an insufficient test here on Tuesday, but now returning to a trip in-keeping with his overall profile, Matthew Smith’s money-spinning gelding can still show the younger generation a thing or two.

An absolute legend of a horse who went down in Irish racing folklore by landing three races at the Galway Festival back in 2019, the son of Urban Poet wasn’t quite so effective at Ballybrit this season, but with his subsequent victory over hurdles at Down Royal recently going a long way to suggest he’s not finished just yet, his memory bank has been sufficiently rebooted. Knowing how this operation think and how well he takes his races, it would come as little surprise if connections used that quality handicap on day three of the meeting just as a prep for today’s contest, and with his run in the ‘Petingo’ Handicap at Leopardstown two starts ago of a horse who would have gone a good deal closer to winning with a clearer passage, the 10-year-old is definitely no 20-1 as the bookmakers have suggested this morning.

One Cool Poet - 0.5pts e/w @ 14/1

16:38 Pontefract

Zaakara could easily turn out to be a blot on the handicap on her nursery debut, but there’s little doubt ENOLA GREY (best price 15/8) brings the best form to the party courtesy of her fine effort at Goodwood last time out and a repeat of the same level of form should see her go close to finally breaking her maiden tag. 

Third, on each of her first four starts, Jonathan Portman’s filly looked to have it all to do in what appeared a useful contest on paper at the Sussex venue 16 days ago and although that belief ended up playing out in the race itself, she actually came out of it with great credit. In what turned out to be a very strongly run affair considering the conditions, the daughter of Havana Grey kept on well in the closing stages after getting outpaced two-furlongs out and on the evidence of that display, today’s extra furlong on a stiff track has to be seen as a positive. Moreover, even allowing for the fact she got beaten four lengths, the time figure she posted puts her someway ahead of today’s field and with the form of the race in question already working out well (sixth-placed Bonnsie won at Kempton last week), it would be a disappointment if she wasn’t vying for top honours herself. 

Enola Grey - 1pt

17:25 Southwell

HARBOUR VISION (best price 10/3) arrives here in cracking form thanks to a well-deserved victory at Wolverhampton last time out and with Scott Dixon’s gelding also having plenty of solid track form to call on, he looks to have every chance of following up.

Runner-up on his previous outing at the Dunstall Park venue, the son of Harbour Watch was the one responsible for the strong time figure that evening and even though he was ridden in a similar aggressive fashion on his return visit, this time he was able to fend off all his pursuers. Third when run out of the argument close home on his last visit to today’s track, the seven-year-old is clearly in a better head space than he was then and from a good draw, he should be difficult to catch if in a similar mood from nine days ago.

Harbour Vision - 1pt @ 10/3

18:15 Chelmsford

MASTERCLASS (best price 7/2), other than one explainable run when racing too freely from a wide draw, has strung together a series of fine results of late and following arguably one of his better efforts in defeat at Kempton last time, David Simcock’s gelding is highly likely to be extremely competitive again.

Off the mark at the sixth time of asking at Brighton, the three-year-old grey returned to the all-weather for his first crack at handicap company last time out and although he couldn’t quite follow up, his effort in defeat easily comes out a career high on the figures. Staying on gamely all the way to the line at the Sunbury track, the son of Lethal Force impressed with his attitude in trying to chase down the winner and with the speed figure working out incredibly good for the grade, he should have little problem coping with the likely strong pace her this evening (Healing Power and Mostallim usually go forward).

Masterclass - 1pt