6.20pm Sandown Tips & Betting Preview 02/08/2017

This is a Class 5 nursery handicap raced over 5 furlongs, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Gold Filigree was sent off favourite when behind Queen Mary Stakes winner Heartache at Bath in May. 73 looks a workable mark on that form but the vote goes to MILTON ROAD. Mick Channon’s charge has won three of his last four career starts, including on good to soft ground. With conditions no issue, this stiff five furlongs should be right up his street and with the assistance of the in form Silvestre De Sousa in the saddle, he should take all the beating.

1 GOLD FILIGREE – Arrives here on the back of some fair performances including a fourth-placed effort behind Heartache at Bath back in May. She was well-supported that day having been sent of the 15/8 favourite and she looks to be improving with every run. An opening mark of 73 looks reasonable on her form and she should be okay with this ground having placed on Good to Soft so she has to enter calculations.

2 SPOOF – Connections have gelded this son of Poet’s Voice following a disappointing run at Brighton in early June. That was a poor run having shown some decent form behind the likes of Declarationoflove and that would see him go close here. However, the ground may have played its part in his poor showing last time out which is a major concern today based on today’s going. The yard are going well at present with a 17% strike rate in the past fortnight.

3 MILTON ROAD – Seeks a hat-trick of wins today following a seller and handicap success from his last two runs. He kept on well last time out to score by a neck off a mark of 69 and he’s been raised 3lbs today which leaves him on a high enough mark. He’s a winner on Good to Soft over 5 furlongs which should count for a lot in this field and he’s partnered by Silvestre De Sousa so the signs point to a big run.

4 BLESSED TO EMPRESS – Won on racecourse debut at Chelmsford back in May and she was highly-tried next time out in a Listed event. She was outclassed that day but it was disappointing to see her finish fourth, beaten 7 1/2 lengths back on the All-Weather last time out and that gives her something to prove today. She’s been allotted an opening mark of 68 which is high enough on handicap debut and there may be value in opposing her today.

5 SHANIA SAYS – Finished 1 3/4 lengths behind Milton Road when the pair met at Nottingham last month and she’s weighted to get much closer to that rival today. Tony Carroll’s filly has been improving with each run and she steps down in trip today which could suit having attempted to make-all on the All-Weather at Kempton. If she can get a handy lead she could be dangerous on ground that should be okay for her. The yard are operating at a 6% strike rate at present.

6 THE GOLDEN CUE – Was comfortably held at Nottingham in a Novice Stakes event last month and he races in a handicap for the first time today. A mark of 62 looks high enough for what he’s shown although his run at Leicester on Soft ground back in May looks solid enough for this level. The yard have failed to send out a winner from their last 9 runners and others make a bit more appeal today.

7 CRUEL CLEVER CAT – Nicely-bred daughter of Bated Breath, John Gallagher’s runner has struggled for form in her career to date, finishing no closer than 6 lengths to any winner. She begins her handicap career off a mark of 52 which looks reasonable and Rhiain Ingram claims 7lbs which will certainly help. However, she hasn’t shown enough form to suggest she’s up to winning a handicap yet and is best watched here.

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