3.30pm Ripon Tips & Betting Preview 14/08/2017

A field of six go to post for the fourth race of the day at Ripon on Monday. See our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: With the withdrawal of Eagle Creek this looks a good opportunity for HELOVAPLAN to bounce back and continue his progressive run in maidens before putting in a lacklustre performance last time when the ground may have been against him. Fujaira Bridge may be able to chase the selection home if putting it all together after the gelding operation and the trip in his favour.

1 EAGLE CREEK – Showed promise on debut at Newbury before returning this season with a comfortable victory at Lingfield. He pulled a full six lengths clear having made all from rivals now rated close to 80, and received Group 1 entries as a result of the win. With excuses for his last run, this looks a much more realistic task. While he has some slight questions to answer returning to turf, this field doesn’t look the strongest and he is expected to make all again.

2 LA CASA TARIFA – Won two races in April for Mark Johnston, including over course and distance, but he’s struggled in two runs since, failing to beat a rival on either occasion. He was last seen at Goodwood where he folded tamely late on. Although a drop back in trip will suit, the handicapper has refused to relent so it’s hard to see him taking this.

3 HELOVAPLAN – Failed to catch the eye in maidens but he started to look progressive in handicaps for Bryan Smart, completing a double when taking a Class 4 event at Doncaster in June. The softer ground is a valid excuse for his latest defeat at the same venue and he still looks fairly treated if judged on the ease of which he won that previous start. He’s a possible forecast option and should be the main danger.

4 CULLINGWORTH – Won a Class 2 event at Musselburgh back in April off a one pound lower mark for Richard Fahey and he’s been set some tough tasks since. He was a shade disappointing when last seen at Ascot, but this is much easier and the handicapper has relented two pounds since then. He cannot be discounted, despite his patchy profile of late, but lacks the potential upside of others in the field.

5 FUJARIA BRIDGE – Sole victory remains a maiden over course and distance in April and he was very disappointing when last seen at Bath, finishing all but tailed off after weakening tamely inside the final furlong. He now returns to this course and distance which is positive and he’s been gelded, but it’s hard to see him winning this against some unexposed and improving types. Andrea Atzeni is on Eagle Creek which speaks volumes and he’s likely best watched.

6 BROTHER MCGONAGALL – Has won three of his last five runs, looking progressive in the main, but that latest victory came at Class 5 level. He was upped in Class 4 company for his latest start at York where he could only manage a pretty much tailed off fifth and the handicapper has not budged. He faces even sterner opposition here in a tougher race and it’s hard to see him playing a part in the finish.

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