8.05pm Pontefract Tips & Betting Preview 21/07/2017

A field of nine go to post for the fourth race of the day at Pontefract on Friday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Now three pounds lower than when a brilliant third in the Spring Mile at Doncaster, CANDELISA is far too well treated to ignore in this and looks very tough to beat if at his best under Graham Lee. He was perhaps disappointing when last seen at Ayr, but he is obviously capable of much better and the Jedd O’Keeffe yard is in blistering form at present. Conditions are to suit and he looks likely to take all the beating on this occasion, with his biggest challenger likely to be Roller. That rival has been progressive this season and his latest run can be ignored as he clipped heels, so he rates as the main danger with a clear passage through.

1 COTE D’AZUR – Bounced out and made most in good style when winning the Hunt Cup at Thirsk in May and he’s been set some tough tasks since by Les Eyre. He is now back down to a mark of 94 which is only a pound above his last winning mark and a reproduction of the all the way victory in the Hunt Cup would see him bang there despite being lumbered with 10st. Jason Hart takes the ride and he is a definite contender.

2 CROWNING GLORY – Has found it tough in pattern company since returning this season for Ralph Beckett, but she wasn’t disgraced in two of those runs and returns to handicaps on a fair mark. She is only six pounds higher than when second in a competitive event at Newmarket in October and she is evidently a better horse now. Georgia Cox is a very capable 5lb claimer and will be able to get the best out of her, so she’s another to consider.

3 SANDS CHORUS – Game front runner for James Given who is a course and distance winner, last seen at Ripon where he won easily. He has been raised five pounds as a result which takes him to a career high mark and a drop back to this trip isn’t sure to suit as his three wins this season have all come at the 1m 2f trip. He will have competition for the lead from Cote D’Azur and he looks set for a minor role with all things considered.

4 CANDELISA – Ran a cracking race to finish third in the Spring Mile at Doncaster back in April and he is three pounds lower here for the in form Jedd OKeeffe yard. He was perhaps disappointing when last seen at Ayr, but he’s obviously capable of much better and is far too well handicapped to ignore in this contest under Graham Lee. Conditions will suit and this trip is his optimum, so he looks very tough to beat if at his best.

5 SPRING OFFENSIVE – Running respectably this season for Richard Fahey without threatening the judge, but this course and distance winner has a good record here and cannot be ruled out. He was last seen at Ayr when fourth (ahead of Candelisa) and he is now one pound lower, so looks sure to make a bold bid with 7lb claimer Connor Murtagh taking the ride. Likely to hit the frame if holding his form and has strong each way claims.

6 RED TEA – Course and distance winner on his penultimate start by a wide margin ahead of Sands Chorus, but she failed to back that up off seven pounds higher when last seen at Haydock. The softer ground was no excuse for her poor ninth as she’s placed on soft in the past, so she has something to prove now off the same mark. David Probert takes the ride and she’s hard to rule out entirely, but others make more appeal on balance.

7 ROLLER – Progressive sort for Michael Easterby who was a good second at Ripon on his penultimate start, keeping on strongly and only beaten a head. His latest run at Haydock can be excused as he clipped heels at a crucial stage and he should be competitive once again with Harrison Shaw taking off a useful seven pounds from his back. Looks set to go close with conditions to suit and has to be respected.

8 TORRID – Has run two good races this season for Micheal Easterby, winning on seasonal debut at Redcar before bumping into a progressive rival at Newcastle when last seen. As a result he’s been raised a further two pounds and this does look like a better race, but he should remain competitive with Cam Hardie takes the ride. Conditions will suit and he looks a solid each way contender with all things considered.

9 DESTROYER – Gained a course and distance victory on his latest start when just holding on in a six runner affair earlier this month, raised two pound in the handicap as a result. This is a much tougher race though and he needs to find improvement if he’s to be threatening, despite having conditions almost identical. Likely to fall short for the placings on this occasion.

10 MORNING SUIT – Not the most consistent of horses for Mark Johnston but he’s entitled to be on the premises after two good runs the last twice. He was last seen at Yarmouth where he was a close third, not getting the best of runs towards the finish. He remains on the same mark and a repeat of that performance back down in trip should mean he’ll be fighting for a place under Franny Norton.

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