IN SUMMARY: This isn’t very competitive for the money on offer and plenty will be drawn to David Barron’s 4yo, Swift Emperor, who ran very well over C&D three weeks ago and might be capable of even better on today’s slightly quicker ground. However, it could be worth chancing the veteran DUBAI DYNAMO, who has been kept busy in recent weeks ago is yet to strike form this season but gained the first of his three C&D wins in 2015 off today’s mark in this race and might well have been targeted at this event again. Steel Train, Edgar Balthazar and Mukhayyan are others that may better their recent efforts.
1 He’s No Saint – Responded well to first-time visor when clearcut winner at York (good to firm) last summer, his fifth start for David O’Meara, but was allowed to dictate from the front that day and his form dipped afterwards; back from 204-day absence here and might still be a shade too high in the weights.
2 Yourartisonfire – Scored off 1lb higher mark at Pontefract (1m, good to firm) in July but ended last season in poor form, finished down the field on last month’s reappearance and was tailed off a Newmarket on Friday; has huge amount to prove at present.
3 Prince Of Johanne – Seen only twice in 2015 and finished well down the field on both occasions; been given a chance by the handicapper if back on song after one-year absence but getting long in the tooth now and it’s very difficult to gauge how much ability remains.
4 Swift Emperor – Presumably found 1m2f on heavy ground too taxing when well beaten here on last month’s seasonal debut but fared much better when close second over C&D (good to soft) a few days later; 3lb higher now but remains lightly raced and today’s slightly better ground is probably in his favour; good chance.
5 Spring Offensive – Produced new career-best performance to win at Pontefract (1m, soft) last month, despite hanging badly in the closing stages; claims on that evidence but needs to prove he can hit the same heights on a sound surface here and never really got involved (albeit in a valuable event) at Newmarket last time out.
6 Steel Train – All seven British runs have been over 7f but he won over 1m when trained in France; has some questions to answer after last month’s disappointing season reappearance but might have needed that outing and it won’t be a shock if he gets more competitive today.
7 Edgar Balthazar – Made good progress over shorter trips when fitted with cheekpieces last season, winning twice along the way (6f/7f); comfortably held in valuable events on first two starts this season and still needs to prove his stamina for 1m but is in calmer waters here.
8 Mukhayyan – Failed to win during light campaign for Sir Michael Stoute in 2015 and down the field on both starts for new stable this year (6f/1m); needs to up his game but sliding handicap mark makes his difficult to rule out.
9 Dubai Dynamo – 11yo who has already had five turf runs this year and hasn’t been firing on all cylinders; however, has gained five of his 17 career wins over this C&D, including this race off today’s mark in 2015; no surprise if he bounces back to form today.
myracing Forecast Prices: 2/1 Swift Emperor, 9/2 Spring Offensive, Dubai Dynamo, 7/1 Steel Train, 10/1 He’s No Saint, Edgar Balthazar, 12/1 Mukhayyan, 14/1 Prince Of Johanne, 20/1 Yourartisonfire