11:55 Lingfield

READY RECKONER (best price 15/2) has yet to really threaten in four starts so far but I liked the way he hit the line strongly on his all-weather debut last time at Chelmsford to be nearest the finish from an unpromising position due to his bad draw in stall eleven and should have a lot more to offer here. 

He was ridden with the possible intent of keeping his handicap mark down, given he was held-up in rear and wasn’t given a hard time of things when the race began to develop before he surged home to only be beaten around four-lengths. The assessor has reduced his mark a couple of pounds and he’s drawn much better here in stall two, so there’s optimism about Jane Chapple Hyam’s charge displaying an even bigger effort here. 

Ready Reckoner - 1pt e/w @ 15/2

13:05 Haydock

THEME TUNE (best price 9/4) ran a decent race to finish fourth at Kelso on his stable debut last time and drops in grade with that run under his belt here. The only previous time he was seen at this course, he finished fourth in a good-quality race behind Celebre D’Allen off a mark of 123. He is twelve pounds lower now, and Bruce Lynn takes off a further three-pounds plus the cheekpieces are reattached too, which could eke out a bit more from him, so he must have excellent claims here with plenty in his favour.
Theme Tune - 1pt @ 9/4

13:55 Lingfield

MEISHAR (best price 11/2) ran a huge race when third over course-and-distance behind a pair of higher-rated rivals last-time-out and a repeat of that performance should see him go close to winning this race. The six-year-old was quite consistent when trained in Ireland but has advanced his form since joining the Jane Chapple-Hyam team, improving with each start, and has finished third behind horses rated 106 and 107 over course-and-distance the last two times. He is drawn well in stall six and should have more to offer from a handy mark of 88, so he’s a big player under David Egan here. 
Meishar - 1pt e/w @ 11/2

13:55 Lingfield

WITCH HUNTER (best price 20/1) wasn’t able to land a blow at Newmarket on his penultimate start but wasn’t far behind Meishar over course-and-distance last time when fourth to Noble Dynasty and let’s not forget Richard Hannon’s charge was a one-length second to El Caballo in the Listed Spring Cup Stakes on all-weather championship day back in March. He was actually sent off odds-on favourite, so his double-figure price in this much easier race is more than generous. If that latest showing has got his fitness up to scratch, he could pose a threat at large odds here. 
Witch Hunter - 0.5pts e/w @ 20/1

14:25 Lingfield

This is very competitive but AERION POWER (best price 9/2) might be about to strike, having shaped encouragingly when fourth on his return from a long absence last time. He has won two of his four starts on the all-weather and is very well-treated off 98 based upon his unlucky second at Doncaster over this trip last year, where he would have won smoothly without his rider mistaking the winning post. He should be suited going back up in distance and he’s drawn effectively in stall two plus Richard Kingscote maintains the partnership. There is no reason why he can’t make a big impact off mark that’s clearly within his capabilities.
Aerion Power - 1pt e/w @ 9/2

14:37 Haydock

Nemean Lion won impressively on his hurdles debut and has to be respected but conditions will be softer here and that will suit MOONLIGHT SPIRIT (best price 12/1) who was rated as high as 110 on the Flat for Charlie Appleby having won a Group Three alongside being highly-tried in the Gold Cup behind Stradivarius. He made a good hurdles debut when winning at Carlisle on soft ground, where his jumping was very assured throughout and he was heavily eased down in the closing stages, winning on the bridle. 

He hasn’t been seen since but it’s interesting to see connections pitch him into the deep-end here under a penalty on his return. Furthermore, his Cartmel-based handler reported he was only 80% fit on his hurdles debut, so better is surely to come and he makes plenty of each-way appeal here. I think the bookmakers have massively underestimated his chances here, as he would easily be pushing close to favouritism if he was trained by one of the bigger yards like Nicholls or Henderson.

Moonlight Spirit - 1pt e/w @ 12/1

15:07 Haydock

Coo Star Sivola would have sound claims on his best form but the fact that he hasn’t won in four years and hasn’t been seen in 500+ days is enough to overlook him here, while stablemate Chambard might just have too much weight. Blaklion won this last year but UP HELLY AA KING (best price 5/1) who was fourth in this twelve months ago, is weighted to finish a lot closer to Blaklion this time around and gets the vote. 

He won a good veterans’ race on his final start last season at Doncaster when beating Vintage Clouds and returned with a very good fourth at Kelso when last spotted. He would have finished third at least without stumbling badly after the final fence but, either way, his fitness is now assured and this race is likely to be run to suit with lots of pace expected to be on offer. This eleven-year-old might get the perfect set-up to make a serious impact. 

Up Hell AA King - 1pt e/w @ 5/1