Race Time: 2.05pm Meeting: Ayr Day: Saturday 2nd January 2015 Full Race Name: 32Red £10 Free Handicap Chase Class Three
No history whatsoever to use to our advantage with this particular race but that has never stopped us and we are more than happy to start with Jonjo O’Neill’s Capard King (6/4) who has a whole lot going for him with the possible exception of a big weight. Four career wins, three over hurdles and one over fences have all been at about this three mile trip, the last on his chasing debut when pretty much all out to hold off Seldom Inn at Southwell on soft ground. His connections have very sensibly given him plenty of time to recover from a tough race and it seems fair to assume that he will improve for both the run and the experience, meaning an extra four pounds may not be anywhere near enough to have him in the handicappers grasp, though the lack of experience has to be counted against him here and could yet be his undoing.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the handicap connections will be hoping that Presented (6/1) will get some reward for his consistency at last. Placed in the first three but without success in his last four races, he has been slowly pushed up the handicap without too much in the way of financial rewards, but seems to stay a lot further than this three miles judged on a second to Neptune Equester last time out in the Scottish Borders National over four miles where he weakened close home but who wouldn’t, and on heavy ground that will push stamina to the limits, he may well be running on when others are downing tools.
Punters need to watch their bets don’t get too confused between Presented and Presenting Junior (6/1) who sits a good deal higher in the weights for trainer Martin Todhunter. Interestingly, although he has won many times over this three-mile trip, they have kept the son of Presenting over shorter distances in recent races but without success, perhaps to get his weight down? His record round here is better than just decent with four wins and a second from five starts which must make him rock solid for the each way thieves, though with just the seven runners, do remember you will only get paid out for first or second.
Nicky Richards is having a bit of a purple patch in recent weeks with a 50% place record of late and in Cultram Abbey (7/1) he has a bit of a dark horse. Still a novice with just the two runs over the larger obstacles, he ran a race full of promise for the future when runner up to Shimla Dawn at Carlisle but failed to build on that when stepped up to this sort of trip at Newcastle when fifty-two lengths seventh to Smooth Stepper but he didn’t jump with any real fluency there, and it may not have been the trip that beat him. Problem is we can’t really be sure and the fact is he hasn’t won at this trip at any code, though he was staying on when falling over even further over hurdles at Kelso, and he is of interest at the very least.
To round things off, we have noticed the good form of the Micky Hammond yard as mentioned elsewhere today, and he has Silver Tassie (13/2) engaged here even if the eight year old looks to have very little chance. He was a good third to Vivaldi Collonges at Kelso last time out when “plugging on” (the official description) on heavy ground, and with a bit further to go today and similar going, he could run in to a place but really ought to be a little bit outclassed this afternoon.