Following a 6/1 place yesterday, Andy Holding is back with two tips from today's action, including a NAP at Wolverhampton.
SMILING SUNFLOWER (NAP) (best price 7/4) proved an instant hit for new connections over today’s course last time out and even though there’s the small matter of being equally effective down in trip to deal with, Michael Appleby’s filly is fancied overcome those slight concerns.
Slowly away and losing upwards of five lengths on her opponents in a fillies’ handicap here 8 days ago, the daughter of Fulbright not only made up the lost deficit to race on the heels of the pack as the field turned for home, she found extra reserves to surge clear inside the final furlong to record a cosy success.
Posting an eye-wateringly fast circuit time of 1.34.9, those sort of numbers are usually reserved for horses rated much higher than her current rating so, even though she races under a penalty here tonight, it’s safe to say it won’t be the extra burden that gets her beat on her return visit.
Drawn out on the wing in stall six tonight, it probably won’t be such a bad thing if she misses the break again because it’ll mean she’ll get tucked away at the rear of the field going down the back straight with cover and if she’s within striking distance of her main rivals turning for home, hopefully her kick finish and stamina will prove the decisive factor.
NOODLE MISSION (best price 2/1) made a complete mess of his bid to follow up his impressive C&D victory at Newcastle last time out but with the strong possibility that connections will have learnt valuable lessons from that reversal, Michael Bell’s gelding can rebound back in the right direction.
Upped significantly in trip after three statutory runs to gain a handicap mark, there was always the possibility to son of Noble Mission would improve for racing over a mile but even so, the manner in which he landed a bargain basement Class 6 contest was still incredibly impressive.
Sent to Gosforth Park just over a week later in order to take advantage of his old mark, his trip up North ended up being a bit of a disaster as, unlike the time before, he found himself in front after a couple of furlongs. Pulling way too hard for his own good, the three-year-old was predictably a busted flush once his energy levels had been burnt out at the furlong pole and he ended up finishing last of five, much to the detriment of those who waded in at 4/11.
Clearly much better suited by being switched off and brought with a late run based on his previous performance, hopefully Danny Muscutt will employ those tactics that served him well at the Dunstall Park venue and if so, his mount is likely to leave the bitter memories of last time well behind.