12 line up for this tricky 0-90 Handicap and plenty in with chances for £7,561 prize. Read on for our experts’ thoughts and betting tips.
IN SUMMARY: Beardwood is bidding for hat-trick and could be tough to pass if hitting the 2f in front. That being said he won’t have it all his own way in front. Alinstante has claims based on a close fifth last time and will improve as will Natural Scenery who was an impressive winner last time at Wolverhampton and should go close if building on that. A chance is taken however on PURPLE ROCK who ran a career-best to score at Newcastle on his last start and looks the type to continue improving on this surface. His yard remains in good form and bold bid is expected against the likely favourite.
1 Beardwood – Has won three times from 14 runs this year including the last twice, getting up by a half-length at Redcar and a neck last time out here 20 days ago. That was a career-best and should continue to progress for her yard who are already showing top form on the AW so far this season and should continue to give a good account.
2 Marshgate Lane – Has won three times from 4 runs this year including landing a Claiming Stakes race here in May and followed up at Wolverhampton 9 days later not looking like his best on that occasion but still doing it nicely enough by 1 ¼ lengths. Has been off for 6 months and back in a Handicap here. Might just need the run and others preferred today.
3 Bluegrass Blues – 33% strike rate this year with two wins from 6 runs, producing a career-best to get up to win by a neck at Kempton in October. Up in trip today and has to prove as effective over 1m2f. Best watched for now.
4 Ocean Tempest – Hasn’t won in seventeen runs since scoring by ½ length at Chester in August 2014. Well below form when eleventh of 13 in a Handicap at Newcastle on latest start. Has been off for 135 days and has to prove himself at this trip. Hard to fancy judged on form despite trainer being adept at getting them ready after a break.
5 Jacbequick – Switched from Turf to AW for last two runs and finished third in both, here and then at Wolverhampton. Could get involved if building on that but others look to have stronger profiles today.
6 Alinstante – Won back-to-back races at Haydock and then Chelmsford last August, always doing enough in both. Wasn’t far back in fifth here 24 days ago and trainer has an excellent strike rate here in the last five years. Yard in good form and each-way claims.
7 Natural Scenery – Five runs so far for the yard has yielded two wins, a one length victory at Newmarket in July then a career-best in a Handicap at Wolverhampton last time out, doing it readily by two lengths. Promising individual who should give it a good go of following up. Yard remains in good form and wears cheek-pieces today.
8 High Baroque – Only five runs for the yard and scored on third start at Pontefract, staying on strongly to win by 1 ¾ lengths. Not knocked about on last start when only seventh of 10 in Handicap at Newmarket and has been off for six months. Makes Polytrack debut today and is open to improvement. Best watched for now and likely to come on for run.
9 Purple Rock – Won an Apprentice’s Handicap at Doncaster in August by 2 ¾ lengths and ran a career-best when getting the best of a 14-runner field in a Handicap at Newcastle 17 days ago over 1m2f. Makes Polytrack debut today and yard continue to send out winners so has to be taken seriously in this.
10 In The Red – Back-to-back winner of two races at Salisbury and the here at 7f-1m. Has been out of form in five runs since and below form when seventh of 12 here 24 days ago. Up in trip and can be discounted for this with confidence.
11 Van Huysen – Has won here before in January in 2015. Has won three times this year, scoring in Handicaps at Chepstow, Sandown and then Leicester two starts back. A distance back in third on latest start at Newmarket, 7 lengths behind the useful looking Wadigor from Roger Varian’s yard and runs off the same mark today. Should continue to give a good account but others have stronger credentials today.
12 Ripoll – Won at Kempton in October, landing a 7f Handicap by ½ length over 7f. Won by the same distance at Wolverhampton in March and a decent enough third on last start here 24 days ago when held up. Hard to fancy back up in trip today.
13 Island Flame – Has won three times form 9 runs this year, including two starts back at Newcastle when scoring by a short-head. Only fourth of 6 in a Handicap here over this distance 24 days ago and has plenty to find with some of these. NON-RUNNER.