A field of nine go to post for fourth race of the day at Plumpton on Monday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: Dragoon Guard was worn down late when returning two weeks ago and holds every chance off 2lb higher, but the forecast rain doesn’t look likely to help his chances and SHIMBA HILLS looks the most likely winner by far. He has won the last twice over C&D and his latest win seemed to suggest that despite a further 5lb, he could go in again. Conditions are to suit and he should take all the beating for Lawney Hill and Nick Schofield.
1 SEA WALL – Well handicapped on previous form, now 7lb below his last winning mark and he has performed well over this C&D in the past. He has however been the beaten favourite on two of his last three starts and he ran poorly when well beaten at Lingfield in January (2m, Heavy). Conditions are to suit and he doesn’t have any excuses today, but with what he has shown this season, he is more than likely to find one too good today.
2 RATHEALY – Won this race in heavy conditions back in 2015 and has won two of his last four starts, but both of those wins came in plating company which has to be of concern. Back into class four company last time out he was well beaten at massive odds in January at Doncaster (2m 3f, Good) on his first start for Christine Dunnett. Still above his last winning mark and others make far more appeal today.
3 GOLDSLINGER – Multiple winner on the flat at trips up to 1m 5f and has run three times over timber, the latest of which last time out when far from disgraced at Newbury two weeks ago (2m, Soft). Handicap debut today and is an interesting proposition for Dean Ivory, with Tom O’Brien a good jockey booking for today’s outing. He needs plenty of respect with conditions to suit and is likely to be a big danger if building upon that novice run.
4 SHIMBA HILLS – Three times a winner on the flat and has been in brilliant form over timber on his last four runs, placing at both Lingfield and over C&D in November when reappearing. The last twice he has competed again over C&D, where he has won on both occasions and shown marked improvement. His latest win gave the impression that more could be expected and a 5lb rise seems very unlikely to stop this progressive six year for Lawney Hill from going in again today with conditions to suit. Likely to be tough to beat and has to be respected as such with Nick Schofield taking the ride.
5 CAMRON DE CHAILLAC – Showed promise on his handicap debut when third at Taunton on his penultimate start (2m 3f, Good) but then ran poorly when last seen at Huntingdon (2m 3f, Good to Soft) off a 2lb higher mark. Similar conditions for today’s run which is of a big concern and he may just need better ground at this trip if he’s to stay it out strongly. Nigel Hawke’s yard is running at peak performance at present and cannot be completely dismissed, but he rates as a risky proposition and others are readily preferred.
6 ROYAL HALL – Had form on better ground in France but has shown little since joining the Gary Moore yard, with his only real effort of note being his fifth at Newbury on British debut, well beaten and nearly forty lengths behind the winner (2m, Soft). Well beaten on handicap debut when last seen at Sandown and very hard to make a case for him on the basis. Others seem far more likely and though he may well do better in time, he’s impossible to recommend today.
7 DRAGOON GUARD – Returned from a break when warn down late over C&D two weeks ago, certainly not disgraced considering it was his first run since August. Raised 2lb for that effort but he remains very competitive, now with race fitness on his side and looks likely to run another big race for Anthony Honeyball and Harry Cobden. No rain overnight would raise his chances, but that looks very unlikely with rain scheduled throughout the evening and morning. Nevertheless he’s the likely biggest threat to the selection today and has to be respected as such.
8 ZANTE – Twice a winner on the flat in France and a maiden hurdle over C&D in April 2016 on his third hurdling start, though he was soundly beaten on handicap debut at Leicester in January on seasonal reappearance (1m 7f, Soft). This doesn’t look any easier, though he has been lowered 5lb on the back of that effort. Possible each way claims with conditions to suit if he has improved from that seasonal reappearance but he is readily brushed aside for win purposes.
9 MOUNT SHAMSAN – Flat winner for Gary Moore but is yet to threaten over hurdles, failing to place after nine attempts at a mainly lower level. Last seen over C&D in December where he was well beaten, with his stamina looking a real issue over hurdles. Jason Nuttall takes off 10lb but that doesn’t seem likely to help him enough and others are readily preferred.