Race Time: 3.45pm Meeting: Chester Distance: 7f 122 yards
Full Race Name: Boodles Diamond Handicap Class Two
Famous last words to start the last Channel 4 race with but we are pretty confident that the winner will be one of those named by us here and that is well in advance of race time. Come the day we will also use the betting as our guide (just the one double figured winner in the past ten years), but as we don’t have that info as yet, we had better rely on the formbook instead. Solid recent form is never to be sniffed at, and Goring (6/1) has that against his name after winning on his return to action at Beverley, leading at the furlong pole and holding off his nearest pursuers. Bottom line is, he cruised up to the leaders at the furlong pole that day but failed to impress once he hit the front but if they hold him up again here off bottom weight he may well prove very difficult to stop off a rating a mere three pounds higher.
Caprior Bere (8/1) is a hard one to call having run well enough on his return to action when second to Festive Fare at Kempton, but if anything he went backwards next time out when a well beaten at Lingfield over this trip which is hardly encouraging to read. Interestingly though his only career win was on heavy going in France so if it gets any more churned up by race time as seems likely, he coiud pull off a surprise but we aren’t here to guess and there is no way we can suggest him based on recent form.
Other recent winners are hard to come by, but Geordie George (9/4) did run a blinder when second to Grandad’s World at Pontefract over a furlong short, running on strongly and suggesting there may yet be more to come over this increased distance. If anyone can get another victory out of him then trainer John Quinn is your man, and with a fitness advantage over the supposed “better horses”, he could well be an each opportunity at a decent price, even if we rather doubt he is quite good enough to win
Sir Michael Stoute sends an interesting one here with Pleiades (5/2), a winner at two and then third on his reappearance behind multiple winner Bow And Arrow at Beverley, though beaten a long long way. He was easy to back that day suggesting he needed the run, but will need to step up considerably to take a hand here, and he does look a slow maturing sort who may well get better with age and more racing.
Billy Slater (4/1) will be the last one we mention here, again because he is trained by Richard Fahey whose record at this track is second to none. Still a maiden, he is owned by (you guessed it) Dr Marwan Koukash and may well have got in here off a feather weight deliberately – going trip and jockey all look in his favour and he could yet pull off an each way surprise.