Fourteen runners take their place for this Class 6 handicap run over 1m4f today. Read on for our expert’s thoughts and betting tips.
IN SUMMARY: Sund City should go well given she has been contesting over further recently and the drop in trip will help. There are few with the form to win this and Graceful Lady looks fairly treated on what she has achieved so far. They can both go close but a chance is taken on LILY EDGE who ran well on her last start on this course over 2m behind Sund City and she can take closer order now down in trip from a good draw. She was impressive in winning a similar handicap at Lingfield in July and she can get her nose in front of the Harry Dunlop filly today.
1 Smoky Hill – Has struggled in better company since winning an apprentice handicap at Yarmouth (Good) in June when a well backed 5/4 favourite. Only tenth of 13 on latest start on the AW at Wolverhampton over 2m. Still on the same mark for that Yarmouth win but only mid-division two starts ago over C&D and looks held by a few of these.
2 Stand Guard – Has won here four times, the last coming over 1m2f in 2009 in a more competitive race than this. Clearly likes the AW with twenty six career wins but returned earlier this year after almost two years off and has struggled in four runs at this level since. Easy to overlook in this making first start in eight months.
3 Catharina – Returning after a five month break and not won since landing a 0-55 handicap at Lingfield in June when 20/1, in comfortable fashion by six lengths from a lowly mark of 46. Put up 10lb since and has struggled quite noticeably in her last five AW runs up to 1m2f. Up in trip again here and hard to see her getting involved from a mark of 52.
4 Comedy House – Dual performer who has won at Lingfield up to 2m and from an 11lb higher mark. Struggled at this level since well beaten over hurdles in the Spring needs his confidence boosting right now having finished seventh of 8 in a better race at Lingfield thirteen days ago.
5 Hermosa Vaquera – Dual performer who has only won once on the level at Brighton last year in a similar race over 1m3f and has her lowest flat mark since then for this. Finished a good second in a Class 4 handicap hurdle two weeks ago but tenth of 13 on last start here early last year and needs a lot more to get involved here with connections reaching for cheekpieces.
6 Silver Lining – Previously with Marcus Tregoning and ran a career best when third of 10 at Wolverhampton in a similar race in February but has run poorly finishing down the field in four starts for this yard so far up to 1m3f. Has placed form at 1m4f so trip should be fine but recent form doesn’t inspire confidence for win purposes.
7 Graceful Lady – Has run consistently this Autumn without winning up to 2m and the drop in trip here should suit. Pulled up two starts ago at Chelmsford when something looked amiss. Only sixth of 13 at Wolverhampton on last start and needs to bounce back here but capable on best form. Solid place claims.
8 Fishergate – Hasn’t won since staying on to win a Class 5 maiden stakes at Ripon (Good) last year and only one decent run this year at Leicester (Heavy) over 1m3f. Hugely disappointing on AW form having only beaten more than one horse on two occasions and looks up against it back on the polytrack now.
9 Lily Edge – Has won over C&D before and won a 0-60 handicap from a basement mark of 46 at Lingfield in June, doing it nicely by 3 ¾ lengths. Ran well at this course when a close fourth (Sund City second) at Lingfield last week and she can get closer to that rival now they are dropped in trip. Dangerous to rule out from a 2lb higher mark here and big player from a good draw in Stall 14.
10 Staplehurst – Beat Hollow filly who has had only four runs so far for this yard. Form so far has been far from impressive only beating four horses home so far in those runs and 3lb lower for this. Last of 11 over C&D last month and likely to be facing the same fate again with a tongue-tie fitted now fitted.
11 Little Orchid – Has finished in the money at this trip so far this season but has finished tailed off from a similar mark at this track and at Wolverhampton on his last two starts. Up against it once more.
12 Sund City – Nine race maiden and has been consistent recently with a couple of placed finishes. Ran a career best to finish second on this course over 2m six days ago. Down in trip today he can make his presence felt with most of his rivals having question marks over them. Solid chance.
13 Tractive Effort – Only four career starts so far and has largely struggled in this company so far. Made handicap debut three days ago at Lingfield and only seventh of 8 in a similar race. Hard to fancy turned out again so quickly.
14 Murraqib – Five race maiden and well held when last of nine in a Class 6 handicap over 2m at this venue last month. Down in trip for this and judged on his best run at Chelmsford two starts ago over 1m5f he will need big improvement to get involved today.