The feature race on Day 2 of the Brighton festival is the Challenge Cup. Read our horse-by-horse race preview for our top betting tips.
IN SUMMARY: Atwix looked in excellent nick when scoring at Epsom a week ago and is 1lb ahead of the handicapper under her penalty here but slight preference is for the other filly, ROSE ABOVE, who has gone up 4lb for her clear second over C&D a month ago but didn’t really have that race run to suit and can do better if there’s a stronger gallop this time. William Hunter may not be straightforward but is in good form and not yet fully exposed. Ravenous has a modest overall strike-rate but comes here after winning in good style and might have more to offer over this sort of trip.
1 Inniscastle Lad – Completed 1m2f hat-trick for Ed Dunlop this spring and gave decent account when sixth in the Cumberland Plate at Carlisle (1m3f, good to firm) for that yard last month; subsequently changed hands for 27,000gns, probably needs to find something extra to make winning debut for new stable.
2 Whinging Willie – Won twice on the AW over the winter (1m4f/1m3f) and made pleasing return from break when second off today’s mark at Epsom (1m2f, soft) in April; not in same form on either subsequent appearance but runs this track well and will be fine on today’s ground; not ruled out.
3 Atwix – Took form to new level when winning readily from off the pace at Epsom (1m4f, good) a week ago, her second run in blinkers; carries a 6lb penalty in a more competitive race here but is evidently at the top of her game; no surprise if she poses a potent threat.
4 Rose Above – 0-7 on turf but won twice on Polytrack in March (1m4f/2m) and bounced back from a disappointing effort when clear second over C&D (good) a month ago; 4lb higher now but a stronger overall pace could show her in a better light.
5 Thames Knight – Dug deep to gain narrow success in Class 5 event at Epsom (1m2f, good) last month but was seemingly anchored by today’s 4lb higher mark when only fifth at Windsor on latest outing and chance probably depends on this new trip unlocking some improvement.
6 William Hunter – Came good at Windsor (11,6f, soft) in June, his second handicap, and travelled smoothly for a long way before finishing third on much faster ground at Sandown (1m6f, good to firm) last month; seems to have a few quirks and may require a cute ride, but it’s quite possible we are yet to see the best of him.
7 Ravenous – Went over two years without tasting victory but comes here after clearcut success at Windsor (11,6f, good to firm) ten days ago; shouldered with 6lb penalty today but due to go up by that amount anyway and remains unexposed over this sort of trip.
8 Second Serve – Yet to make any significant progress since winning Chelmsford maiden (1m2f, AW) in April and hasn’t been firing on all cylinders on recent outings, the latest with blinkers tried, but current mark probably not beyond him and trainer has good record at Brighton.
9 Smoky Hill – Gained wide-margin success in Class 6 appentice jockeys’ event at Yarmouth (1m3f, good to firm) in June but the value of that form is open to question and he was effectively only 3lb higher when forced to settle for third at Newbury (1m2f, good to firm) a few days later; full 9lb rise has now taken effect and is likely to leave him vulnerable here.
10 Cockney Boy – Beaten out of sight when making handicap debut at Thirsk (1m4f, good to soft) on Friday and effectively 2lb higher here; remains unexposed but huge leap of faith required to support him.
myracing Forecast Prices: 3/1 Atwix, 11/2 Rose Above, William Hunter, 6/1 Ravenous, 8/1 Inniscastle Lad, Whinging Willie, Second Serve, 12/1 Smoky Hill, 14/1 Thames Knight, 33/1 Cockney Boy