Endeavour is likely to go off a warm order for this competitive little handicap but he has to concede plenty of weight to his rivals so it won’t be as easy as his price may suggest it will be. He is now an 11 year old so could be vulnerable to a younger horse. The horse of interest is the Victor Thompson trained GIN COBBLER (8/1) who is just two pounds higher than when winning with a bit of authority at Sedgefield two starts back. He has been beat 61 and 81 lengths in his two subsequent starts which has to be a bit of a concern but they were better contests’ than this. Kit Alexander takes off a very handy seven pounds and although this horse is without doubt very inconsistent, he does pop up from time to time. He is a fast ground horse so any more drying would be right in his favour and at the odds he looks worth a bet.
1 ENDEAVOUR – Without doubt the best horse in the field but he has to concede between 1 to 2 stone to his rivals which will be no easy task, especially at the ripe old age of 11. He ran a terrible race when last of the seven runners over hurdles at Perth last time out but finished 2nd at the same venue off a mark of 106 over fences in September and a repeat of that will see him go close. He is a course and distance winner but looks worth taking on at the current odds.
2 DARK AND DANGEROUS – Off the track for 336 days so looks very hard to fancy off the back of such a long lay off. He also looks a horse that is much more suited to soft or heavy ground so the forecast good ground wouldn’t be ideal. Likely to need this run to blow the cobwebs away.
3 GIN COBBLER – Beat miles on his last two starts but he went with plenty of zest when winning at Sedgefield in May. He is now just two pounds higher in the weights and is in receipt of nearly a stone from the favourite, so if he can bounce back on his favoured faster ground, he has a very solid chance.
4 LAKE CHAPALA – This boy is a very quirky horse; he refused to race at Huntingdon last time out so this is your warning if you are backing him. However, the Tim Vaughan yard have been in very good form the past couple of weeks and he was 2nd at Perth off a two pound lower mark in September so he is not without his chance if he does jump on terms.
5 SHINE A DIAMOND – Lucinda Russell trained 8 year old who won back to back over fences in the autumn of 2014 but he has been very inconsistent since. Visor and tongue tie are on for this and he is running off a very nice mark. If any trainer can get him back to life, it is Lucinda.
6 ASUNCION – Won at Newcastle off a mark of 83 back in March on heavy ground and is now running off 78, a five pound lower mark so she is off a very tempting mark. Most of her running has been on ground with plenty of cut though which has to be a major concern. Chance if she takes to the ground.