WINNER MASSAGOT made a very pleasing start to the season when winning a competitive Ascot handicap under a confident ride in November and his subsequent defeat in a valuable event there shouldn’t be viewed harshly. He’s in much calmer waters today and gets the nod. Template appeared to find heavy ground too taxing on his latest outing but can resume his earlier progress here and is earmarked as the main danger, while Cotillion may find this a bridge too far following his hatrick of wins in weaker contests.
WINNER MASSAGOT – Created good impression when winning good-quality event on seasonal/handicap debut at Ascot (2m, soft) in November; not in same form when down the field in The Ladbroke there the following month but this race is easier and he remains of interest.
MONYJEAN – Won over hurdles in France last year but has struggled to land a blow in two chases for new stable this season; might fare better now back in this sphere and can’t be written off just yet but others have much less to prove.
SLEEPY HAVEN – 0-5 since switched to fences this season and now reverts to hurdles after taking a tumble last month; attractively weighted if able to recapture best form and conditions here will suit, but a leap of faith is required to support him at present.
COTILLION – Has easily won three slow-ground sellers over about 2m4f this season, and proved he can still get competitive in handicaps when second here (2m4f, heavy) last month; today’s drop back in trip not an obvious move but he can make his presence felt.
TEMPLATE – Won twice towards end of 2015, over 2m2f here (soft ground) and at Huntingdon (2m, good to soft); slightly disappointing when only fourth at Lingfield on latest outing but that came on heavy ground; no surprise if his progress resumes today.
MINELLAFORLEISURE – Made disappointing start to chasing career this season and was pulled up when reverting to hurdles over 2m5f at Kempton on Boxing Day; still quite lightly raced and will be fine over today’s trip but needs to get career back on track.
APTERIX – Useful Flat-racer who ran well to a point when returning from absence back over hurdles at Haydock (2m, soft) last month; would make more appeal on faster ground but could have a say if building on that performance.
myracing Forecast Prices: 6/4 Winner Massagot, 4/1 Template, 9/2 Cotillion, 6/1 Apterix, 10/1 Sleepy Haven, 12/1 Monyjean, 20/1 Minellaforleisure
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