This is an interesting maiden over 1m 2f, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: Archibelle is respected back into maiden company following an excellent run at Doncaster ten days ago but it is quite a quick turnaround for the filly and she is yet to prove that this shorter trip is her optimum. Taking a chance on LEVEN at a nice price is worthwhile and, given his breeding, he will appreciate stepping up to this 1m 2f trip having found Navan’s mile too short on his debut. That run wasn’t void of some promise and a big step up on the figures will hopefully be forthcoming today.
1 FORMATIVE – Noel Wilson has been in fine form of late with 3 winners from his last 4 runners but it would be a surprise to see his entry win today. He finished last of nine, beaten 100 lengths at Market Rasen in a National Hunt Flat race last month and the drop down in trip and switch to the flat is unlikely to bring about enough improvement to win this. He’s best watched today and will be better suited to handicaps.
2 NEWSPEAK – Lightly-raced 5yo making just his sixth career start today. He’s by New Approach and started life off at Godolphin but he’s had a host of issues and he’s yet to finish closer than 13 lengths to the winner in any of his races. He has to give away lots of weight here to some much better rivals and with an official rating of 51, he’ll be better suited to lower grade handicaps.
3 PADDYPLEX – Keith Dalgleish’s runner makes his first start on the flat today. He was beaten a long way in three National Hunt Flat races across the winter, the latest of those coming over an extended 2 miles at Musselburgh. On breeding alone, he looks much better suited to this sort of trip and there was a bit of money around for him over further so he’s no forlorn hope here. Phillip Makin is on board and he’s been in flying form of late with 6 winners from his last 30 rides.
4 WEMYSS POINT – Has shown some ability over much further having finished second on three occasions. It’s a slight concern that he was heavily beaten when dropped down in trip to 1m 4f at Wolverhampton last month and this shorter trip is unlikely to be his sort of distance on all known evidence. He has led before and will be suited by a strong pace but it’s tricky to make a case for him giving weight away to some nicer types.
5 NUOVA SCUOLA – Racecourse debut today for Jim Goldie’s filly. She’s out of an interesting mare that won as a 3yo over 5 furlongs and as a 4yo over 2 miles and further making her extremely versatile. She finished her flat career off a mark of 91 and given Jim Goldie also trained the mare, he should know all about this filly today. She’s likely to need her racecourse debut today and the percentage call is to oppose her in this.
6 BORN TO BE ALIVE – Son of Born To Sea who was picked up for 10,000GNS as a yearling. He’s a half-brother to some nice enough sorts including Father Frost who won once for Aidan O’Brien over 7 furlongs on debut. This looks like the right trip for him and the yard have sent out maiden winners this year so the market should be informative as to his expected chances today. The yard have an 18% strike rate at Ayr from 93 runners.
7 HUGOIGO – Another racecourse debutante in this and the second runner for Jim Goldie. He’s a half-brother to some particularly average sorts including a couple of long-standing maidens, all trained by Jim Goldie. He has a 7lb claimer on his back today and his profile suggests he’s unlikely to be a forward type and he will almost certainly need handicaps to be seen to best effect. Opposed here.
8 LEVEN – Half-brother to the classy The Tartan Spartan and John Patrick Shanahan’s runner is an interesting runner here. He was comfortably held in a Navan maiden last month but he ran with promise over a trip too short and this extra distance should bring out plenty of improvement in him. The stable have had 2 winners from their last 9 runners and he’s worth extremely close attention in the betting now tackling this longer trip.
9 SKETCH BOOK VALUE – Alan Swinbank’s son of Rip Van Winkle was picked up for 30,000 Euros as a yearling and he showed plenty of potential on debut. He was sent off the 5/2 joint-favourite and he finished second to a nice sort over today’s trip on Good to Firm ground at Redcar. That rival went on to finish second in a handicap off a mark of 78 and that gives him a decent chance on form of recording a victory at just the second time of asking. He’s likely to be popular here and with normal progression he should be dangerous today.
10 ARCHIBELLE – Just touched off in a 1m 4f maiden at Doncaster last month. She was beaten a nose that day having just faltered in the closing stages and the drop back down to 1m 2f looks as if it should suit her better today now kept on fast ground. The handicapper has raised her 5lbs on official ratings which leaves her something to find with Fiendish but she looked spot on that day and this maiden looks much easier than her last assignment.
11 FIENDISH – Mark Johnston’s filly is the top-rated runner in this maiden but she’ll need to do better than when last seen at Bath. She finished fifth of six, beaten 5 1/4 lengths by some fair types but she didn’t look to enjoy herself that day and connections will be hopeful that the step up in trip and slightly softer ground may help. She needs to learn to settle better and if they go a crawl here, she may be seriously disadvantaged.