16:10 Exeter

STRIKING A POSE (best price 8/1) made a successful return to hurdles after a large spell over fences here last time out and with that game victory taking his record at Haldon Hill to 3-3, Joe Tizzard’s gelding probably deserves a little more respect than the market affords him. 

Not only did he face several improving in-form rivals 23 days ago, but he also had to cope with a marked drop in trip but despite those two imposts, he came through with flying colours. Always handy throughout, the eight-year-old was one of the two who pulled clear of the rest to chase home the strongly fancied pacesetter, Royal Jewel and although he appeared to be fighting a losing battle for majority of the home straight, his persistence finally paid off in the dying strides. 

Going on strongly at the line, he left the impression a return to distances more in-keeping with his profile would suit in future and with the speed figure pointing towards him running right up to his previous best, confidence is high he can continue in the same vein. 

Striking A Pose - 1pt e/w

18:15 Dundalk

HASTEN SLOWLY (best price 13/2) can be the architect of his own downfall, slow starts being his Achilles Heel, but as he proved here last week, he can also run to a high standard when things go right, and a chance is taken on John McConnell’s inmate doing things in a more conventional fashion - like his effort here last week. 

A little more alert out of the gates than of late, his wide draw, however, meant life was still going to be tricky making his presence felt but to his great credit, he somehow worked himself into a position where he had a sporting chance of landing the prize turning for home. Keeping on well all the way down the straight he ended up being the only one to offer any sort of resistance to the handier ridden Wrecking Ball Paul and with the time figure the best on the card, his performance deserved extra merit. 

Based on that display and his previous attempt at 1m4f, a step up in trip should suit and providing he breaks relatively well, the four-year-old should play a major role in the finish. 

Hasten Slowly - 1pt e/w

19:00 Wolverhampton

ENZOS ANGEL (best price 11/4) and RACING COUNTRY (best price 10-1) have yet to prove they stay today’s trip, but both couldn’t arrive here in any better form and there’s more than a fair chance at least one of them will stand up to the plate. 

The former was having his first run since leaving Stuart Williams here last time out and he turned out to be a total revelation with a convincing win. Always travelling well, Neil Mulholland’s grey picked up the running still hard on the bridle rounding the home turn and once sent for the judge from that juncture, he scampered clear to score with plenty in hand. 

Posting a good speed figure for the grade, he looked one to keep firmly on side based on the evidence from seven days ago and, as he wasn’t stopping as he hit the line, there’s every possibility he will prove equally effective over two furlongs more. 

The latter landed a good old-fashioned gamble at the Dunstall Park venue 28 days ago and with the numbers also pointing in the direction of his performance being well above average for the grade, a chance is taken on Martin Dunne’s gelding coping with the extra distance. 

Having his first run for 317 days and for new connections, those in the known never had too many anxious moments and even though the normal thought process with a horse of his age would be to think there might not necessarily more to come, because he’s so lightly raced, he could end up bucking that theory. 

Enzos Angel - 1pt
Racing Country - 1pt