4.25pm Ascot Tips & Betting Preview 28/07/2017

A field of fifteen go to post for this interesting handicap at Ascot on Friday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: With Yalta a non-runner, SHAMSHON, who won snugly on his latest start at Newmarket, looks a big danger to everything and gets the nod. He’s still well-treated on previous form and won over C&D on soft ground last October when rated 2lbs higher than he is now. With luck in-running, he will be in the frame pitching. Of the remainder, Copper Knight looks a solid each way contender alongside Coolfitch.

1 JUST GLAMOROUS – Won a Group 3 at Chantilly in September but he has been well below form in three runs this season for Ronald Harris. He was last seen finishing last in the King’s Stand Stakes and although this is a big drop in class, he showed very little in that race and a mark of 105 demands far more than what he’s shown previously in handicaps. Others make far more appeal.

2 VERNE CASTLE – Dual winner back in February for Andrew Balding but he has been out of form the last twice and he looks to be in the handicapper’s grip at present. He could only finish a disappointing eleventh in the All-Weather Sprint Championship at Lingfield and far more is needed in a very competitive handicap. He is now 14lb above his last winning mark and others are far more solid options.

3 YALTA – NON-RUNNER.

4 COPPER KNIGHT – Running well this season for Tim Easterby, winning twice including a big field handicap at York in May where he made all in good style. He was well beaten on his latest start in the City Walls Stakes at York earlier this month, finishing tenth of eleven and it is not hard to be disappointed by that performance. A mark of 101 though back handicapping isn’t necessarily insurmountable and Rachel Richardson takes off three pounds, so he’s a possible each way contender.

5 MONSIEUR JOE – Ten year old veteran for Paul Midgley who has been in decline of late, nowhere near the form he was hitting last summer for connections. He was last seen at Newmarket when a well beaten third in conditions company, where many seemingly underperformed. Prior to that run he was well beaten in a handicap at Newmarket and this looks tougher, so he’s best watched again despite his slipping mark.

6 ROBOT BOY – Last win came at Wolverhampton in February, but he’s clearly a better horse on the all weather and needs to match that form back on turf if he’s to feature. He finished sixth in the Sprint Cup at Musselburgh back in June off a four pound higher mark which was encouraging, but he was subsequently last here over course and distance when last seen. Others look stronger despite the first time hood going on.

7 GRAVITY FLOW – NON-RUNNER.

8 AFANDEM – Showed very little in two races to start off his season, showing very little in a handicap at Newcastle on his second start of the campaign back in June. Down three pounds in the handicap, he ran a better race when eight in a handicap at Newmarket and should be happier back down in trip as he weakened badly towards the finish. Possible each way claims down a further three pounds but that is all.

9 SOIE D’LEAU – Rna well last season including a brilliant win a competitive handicap at Doncaster in October and although he’s four pounds lower in the handicap now, he’s been disappointing this season. His best run this season came on his latest start when fourth at Newmarket, but he was behind Top Boy and looked rather one paced towards the finish. Hard to rule him out completely but others make more appeal for win purposes.

10 SHAMSHON – Course and distance winner who is very capable at this level, as proven by his comfortable victory at Newmarket when last seen ahead of Top Boy. He has been raised three pounds as a result, but he should be firmly in the fight for Stuart Williams under Jim Crowley. Softer conditions are perfectly fine and he has to be considered a big danger.

11 COOLFITCH – Temperamental sort for David O’Meara who proved on her latest start at York earlier this month she can is a very capable handicapper at this level. She was only beaten around half a length and she will handle today’s softer conditions, with Shelley Birkett taking a further three pounds off her back. On that basis, she looks to have solid each way claims.

12 EXCEED THE LIMIT – Ran a very good race on his return this season to finish second at Chelmsford in May, but he’s been well beaten in three runs since. He returned to that same course and distance on his latest start when only able to muster up seventh, never looking threatening at any stage. He has been dropped two pounds as a result but he makes very little appeal on what he’s shown of late.

13 JACK DEXTER – Last seen in the Scottish Stewards’ Cup at Hamilton where he did very well to finish fourth, racing away from the principles and only beaten around two lengths. He remains on the same mark and if reproducing that form he has definite each way claims, as he will handle the ground and Jim Goldie has had a good spell of late.

14 PETTOCHSIDE – Won three starts ago at Slaisbury off a four pound lower mark and was last seen on Monday at Windsor where he finished third, very much one paced after being headed. That run needs to be improved upon and despite having conditions to suit, he’s hard to give a chance to. Hollie Doyle is certainly a good jockey booking, but others make more appeal on balance.

15 TOP BOY – One win from 45 runs on the turf for Derek Shaw which doesn’t make for pleasent reading and although he was a good second at Newmarket when last seen, he was brushed well aside by Shamshon. A turnaround seems unlikely and a one pound rise in the weights isn’t helpful either. Possible each way claims if building on that latest run, but his overall turf record does mean you’re backing on faith.

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