3.50pm York Tips & Betting Preview 21/05/2016

3.50pm York – titanbet.co.uk Spring Sprint (Handicap Stakes) Class Two – 5f

This is possibly the toughest race of the day to call at this early stage though Mick Channon has entered Shore Step (7/1) here and quickly stepped in to book Silvestre De Sousa to ride. Now a six-year-old, the son of Footstepsinthesand has been a victim of his own consistency has has hovered around the 93 mark for seven races now, suggesting it may be a few pounds more than he can carry to success. Having said that, he did run really well on his seasonal debut at Ascot when fourth on his first run in eight months, and if he comes on for the race then he could land a top three spot and a share of the prizes money.

Trainer Paul Midgely took this race last year with Monsieur Joe at a decent price and will look to follow up in 2016 with Related (33/1) who looks like decent each way value to us. For a small yard he does pretty well at York (his local track), and his six-year-old gelding has some pretty decent form including a fourth in the Wokingham off a mark two pounds higher so you can see why we think he has chances. He does stay further (also finished fourth in the Bunbury Cup over seven furlongs), and tries the minimum trip for the first time in a 29 race career but we can envisage Phil Makin bouncing off from the stalls and playing catch me if you can granted a decent break, or that is the way we would want him ridden if he was ours.

David Simcock has a serious challenger here in our view with Doctor Sardonicus (7/1), a five-year-old with plenty of winning form, just not yet at this level. The betting suggested he really needed the race on his return at York when sent off at 16/1 and ran well enough back in fifth behind Duke Of Firenze. Ten pounds better off with that rival today for less than four lengths, he ought to be able to turn that around and we are more worried about the five-furlong trip as he does stay further and may find everything happening a bit too quickly at his age.

Northgate Lad (16/1) goes well fresh as seen with win first time out as a juvenile and a respectable second first time last season, so we cannot simply ignore him and the four-year-old could yet represent a bit of each way value. He has won off of handicap marks as high as 90 and has slowly drifted back down to 92 today so not a lot in it, and as we feel he could be at his best first time out today could be the time to catch him, while the Brian Ellison stable continue in pretty decent form.

Looking for others now and as it’s a handicap we can’t realistically leave any of them out, but David “Dandy” Nicholls has a very strong hand and looks likely to have more than one runner come Saturday. Franny Norton has been booked to ride Kimberella (12/1) who has already won this season at Chester and is now rated 92, just a single pound higher than when successful last July over course and distance but in a slightly lower grade. Luck in running is a pre requisite in all these sprints do the odd loss is more than acceptable, and given decent ground and the rub of the green, he could run another big race here.

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