3.55pm Ripon Tips & Betting Preview 28/08/2017

A really classy mile handicap on what is always a quality card at Ripon on the August Bank Holiday. Our runner by runner preview and expert tip are below.

IN SUMMARY: LAIDBACK ROMEO has shown improved form this season with a pair of very smart runs at Sandown. He has won at this track in the past and with a pair of front runners in this contest, he should have the race set up to suit. Brilliant Vanguard and One Word More are others who will appreciate an end to end gallop, the former has done well at this track while the latter often shapes well from the back in his races and is likely to make late headway towards the frame.

1 LAIDBACK ROMEO – A winner over this course and distance almost three years ago, he has shown his best form at Sandown since, a winner and runner-up in two starts there this season. They were the two peak efforts of his career, lightly raced for a five-year-old and evidently still improving. He should get a solid pace to aim at here and with the ground drying in his favour, he has a excellent chance.

2 GURKHA FRIEND – 2/3 at this track, both wins coming in 2017. He is a gritty front runner, this track often favouring those who get the fractions right on the front end. He was flat last time, a break since perhaps what he needs to get his season back on the straight and narrow. Strong chance if he is let alone on the front end, likely to set the race up for a closer if he is taken on, the latter looking more likely with Florenza in opposition.

3 HOME CUMMINS – Sixth in this race last year from the same mark, she has run well this season going closest last time out at York. That track suits her well, her latest win coming there in July 2016. A length and three quarters behind Laidback Romeo at Sandown earlier in the year, she has ground to make up with that rival once more and a place looks the best she can hope for.

4 ONE WORD MORE – Tricky customer to win with, just 3/39 in his career and without a win since April 2015. He has gone close to hitting the frame in a pair of deep handicaps already this season but was never competitive at the Ebor meeting. Each way chance if everything falls right for him but history has shown that he is more likely to catch the eye staying on from the back, but will be unable to actually cash in on the impression he makes.

5 FLORENZA – Has done most of her racing at a lower level, competing from a career high perch here. She could be the potential spoiler in the race for Gurkha Friend as a fellow front runner, the pair duelling for the lead is likely to help neither of them. She needs more to be in with a chance of winning, in a race that isn’t set up for her to succeed.

6 KHARBETATION – Made an impressive debut at Thirsk last summer but has failed to back that up in either run so far in 2017. Taken out at Yarmouth on Sunday with travel problems, this is a deeper contest now and despite what he showed on his debut, it’s his dismal effort last time out that clouds his chances now.

7 TWO FOR TWO – Landed a preview win at a solid price at the start of July, he has struggled since in races that lack the depth of this one. He holds no secrets from anyone at the age of nine and despite a win and a couple of places from nine runs at this track in the past, he is easy enough to omit from win calculations.

8 FATHER BERTIE – Fourth in this race in 2016 from three pounds lower, he has shown none of his old sparkle so far in 2017, including twice here. He is difficult to support on those runs but he tends to come into his own as the season progresses with eleven of his fifteen placings coming after the 8th of July and eight of them in September or October. May not be up to winning this but he is very much one to keep in mind for the autumn.

9 FORT BASTION – May 2015 was the last time he won on turf, twenty-one efforts since resulting in just a runner-up and three thirds. He is very well treated these days on the pick of his form but was disappointing when last on his return at Doncaster on his most recent outing. Surely capable of better than that but still isn’t one of the more likely ones for a yard having a rather slow time of things.

10 BRILLIANT VANGUARD – Won over this course and distance last time out, his second win in three trips to the course. He travelled notably well on that occasion, winning with a little more in hand than the official margin suggests. He will need more again stepped up in class but with a pair of front runners in here to ensure it is run at a fair tempo, the race should be run to suit him once more, solid each way chance.

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