3.45pm Ascot Tips & Betting Preview 02/09/2016

Eight runners have been declared for the Class 3 handicap over 1m4f on Friday’s Ascot card. Our betting tips focus on an alternative to the favourite. Read on for the full race preview.

IN SUMMARY: Having won four of his first five starts, Walpole is likely to be a very popular choice. The case for him is obvious but, at the prices, it could be worth siding with WILLIAM HUNTER, who may not be entirely straightforward but produced a good performance to win one of Brighton’s feature races last month and has the potential to make further progress. Renfrew Street was involved in a blanket finish to a fairly valuable event at Hamilton a week ago and, off the same mark here, she also deserves serious consideration.

1 Archangel Raphael – Sold out of Aidan O’Brien’s stable in the autumn; yet to strike form after three starts for new trainer this year and was particularly disappointing on latest outing in June; been given a  break and some help from the handicapper but has quite a bit to prove.

2 Sunblazer – Contested some very valuable races after starting the year with three AW wins (1m4f-2m) and appreciated a significant drop in class when third at Newbury (1m5f, good to firm) last month; needs a decent test over today’s trip but not ruled out.

3 Walpole – Lightly raced 4yo who has won four of his five starts, the latest after a break at Thirsk (1m4f, good to firm) last month; 5lb higher in a slightly stronger race this time but there’s every chance we are yet to see the best of him.

4 Jacob Cats – Returned to form and won consecutive starts in June (1m3f/1m5f); also performed well when second at Sandown (1m6f, good to soft) the following month but latest run suggests the handicapper has regained control now.

5 Dolphin Village – Boasts a very healthy 8-41 career strike-rate, the latest win gained at Newmarket (1m4f, good) in July; can give another good account here but was nudged up 1lb for finishing third back at Newmarket last time and looks vulnerable now.

6 Knight Music – Gained short-head success in a tactical, four-runner contest at Brighton (1m4f, good to firm) in June but it’s unwise to get too excited by that form and he seems to have gone off the boil in recent outings.

7 William Hunter – Didn’t find much for pressure after travelling strongly over 1m6f two starts ago but made amends when landing the Brighton Challenge Cup (1m4f, good) last month; came from behind in a race that wasn’t that strongly run on that occasion and has scope to improve again.

8 Renfrew Street – 3yo filly who is unexposed over today’s trip and left a disappointing performance behind when close fourth in the Lanark Silver Bell at Hamilton (1m4f, good) a week ago; needs to be taken very seriously off the same mark here.

myracing Forecast Prices: 13/8 Walpole, 11/4 William Hunter, 9/2 Renfrew Street, 10/1 Dolphin Village, 12/1 Sunblazer, Jacob Cats, 20/1 Archangel Raphael, 25/1 Knight Music

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