A classy affair, though only six go to post this quality field should serve up a cracker. See our betting tips and the full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: Sutter County sets the standard on past form but SECOND THOUGHT should have the potential to improve past him. Confirming his debut promise when easily winning at Wolverhampton last time out, he still remains with lots of potential and can score another winner for the inform William Haggas team. Tomily is the most likely challenger if picking up from where he left off in October.
1 LETMESTOPYOUTHERE– Performing at a useful enough level and posted a career best when down in trip on his latest start at Newcastle (7f, Std). Needed the entire seventh furlong to get his head in front so dropping back in trip again may find him lacking the raw speed needed to win a race such as this. Has 16lb to find with the 103 rated Sutter County and is likely to struggle on these terms though he is unexposed on the all weather and could have place claims if they go a good clip from the outset.
2 MUNRO – Very low key debut has been followed up by good wins over C&D in November and Lingfield in December (6f, Std), showing that he has good potential. Rated 84 on the back of that latest win which means he does have a substantial amount to find on ratings with a few of these, but he is thoroughly unexposed and remains with scope for progress. The inform Adam Kirby (14-44 in the past two weeks) takes the ride and he is an interesting contender if improving again.
3 SECOND THOUGHT – Showed promise on debut at Salisbury in May (5f, Good) and confirmed he was a good prospect when winning with ease at Wolverhampton in December (6f, Std). As his seasonal reappearance that was highly promising and there is almost certainly more to come from this three year old by Kodiac, racing for the inform William Haggas who has a 50% strike rate from four runners in recent weeks. This 70,000gns purchase is likely to take another giant leap forward today and has to be respected.
4 SUTTER COUNTY – Sets the standard on the back of his penultimate start at Newcastle in November (6f, Std) and was perhaps caught out by the drop in trip when unable to quicken at Wolverhampton last month (5f, Std). This return to 6f will suit and is rated atleast 4lb higher than all his rivals, but he clearly isn’t bulletproof with a number of defeats to his name including when a short priced favourite. Will almost certainly be in the shake up but does need to improve as his latest effort wont be good enough to win this.
5 TOMILY – Useful juvenile who was improving race by race last season, posting a career best when last seen at Doncaster in October (6f, Std). Has had a short break since and has comparable form to that of Sutter County, with him only rated 4lb inferior. He’s proved he is capable of performing on the all weather with his debut at this track and should have much more to give, with his scope for progress still large. If improving once again he should find himself in the thick of things come the finish and has to be respected for Richard Hannon.
6 VISIONARY – Has showed some good form and won a similar race to this at Wolverhampton two weeks ago, albeit in a weaker race than this (6f, Std). That effort did however show he is progressing and showed a good attitude as he was pushed along from an early stage but stayed on much the best. He does need to show more if he’s to take this however and he’s most likely going to find one of these too good today under these terms, so place claims at best.