The straight mile in front of the juveniles in this nursery handicap, where most are longer term prospects for 2018. Our expert tip and runner by runner preview are below.
IN SUMMARY: BEE MACHINE hasn’t shown much in three runs for a mark over five furlongs, but he has been stepped straight up to a mile for his handicap debut which is notable. Declan Carroll knows the time of day with his juveniles so the support at big prices as soon as the market opened is worth paying attention to. Kylie Rules wasn’t far behind a Group 3 placed horse at this track last time, she has to give weight away to the boys but she looks a big price. Lady Alavesa and Archie Perkins are others who need to be considered in a fascinating contest.
1 KYLIE RULES – Improved both for the step up to seven furlongs and the step into handicap company last time. She was last of three on that nursery debut but only beaten two lengths in total, the winner finishing third in a Group 3 the next time so despite the small field it looks strong enough form. She was outpaced there, running on again late in the day so this further step up in trip should suit her, big chance on what she has in the formbook so far with the promise of more to come.
2 STARBOY – Showed little in four runs, failing to improve for being gelded and first time headgear when last seen. He failed to beat a rival home when trying the Polytrack at Chelmsford so he has plenty to prove for the time being.
4 LADY ALAVESA – Dug deep to land a nursery over half a furlong shorter at Ffos Las last time. Both of her best efforts have come on very soft ground, she shaped well enough on the Tapeta at Wolverhampton over six furlongs. With the surface no issue and the step up to a mile sure to suit her, she needs serious consideration.
5 FAR DAWN – Went close in a Bath nursery over this trip at the end of August, just run down on the uphill climb to the line. He ran respectably on this surface on his debut, beaten eleven lengths by the Coventry Stakes winner Rajasinghe. He has got a three pound rise to contend with now, but he would be a danger to all if he got an easy time of things on the front end.
6 ADMIRAL SPICE – Showed a little more over seven furlongs here last time out, sporting first time cheekpieces having been gelded. A half sibling to three sprint winners, that doesn’t look an obvious plus stepping up to a mile but his run style suggests that he needs this extra trip. His dam had mile winners as relatives so perhaps he will stay but he needs plenty more in any case.
7 MARSH STORM – Showed her best form on debut at this track over five furlongs. She has produced bits and pieces of form since, including when shaping well for a long way over seven furlongs here last time. Her dam stayed a mile so perhaps the step up in trip will suit her but she needs to find that debut form again.
8 ARCHIE PERKINS – Only beaten a head over seven furlongs here last time when in front of March Storm. He is a half brother to Hombre Rojo who improved considerably when stepped up to a mile in early 2016 so this trip should be within his grasp. He was a long way in front of the third there so his mark staying the same is something of a surprise, he should be at least in the frame once more.
9 ECHO – Has stepped forward a little with each visit to the track for this opening mark. He is bred to get a little further next year but he has shown promise in those runs and is starting at the right end of the weights. The way he came up the Beverley hill last time over seven and a half furlongs was in the shape of a horse who already needs further than this, but at this low level he may make his presence felt.
10 TROOP – A half brother to both a six furlong sprinter and a hurdles winner over more than three miles, he is by a speed influence yet has looked anything but quick thus far. He was half a length behind Echo last time, with first time cheekpieces added in a bid to coax more from him. Needs plenty more but it will be interesting to see how he fares now handicapping.
11 CHERUBIC – Looked harshly treated when making her handicap debut at Chelmsford, she ran a little better than she had in maidens but a two pound drop looks insufficient to get her involved. She stuck to her task well enough, plugging on at one pace with a number of mile and a half horses on her dam’s side, that isn’t a surprise. More of a long term prospect for 2018.
12 SAXONROAD BOY – Shown little in four starts so far, including on nursery debut last time. That was over a sharp seven at Musselburgh, struggling to go the pace from a long way out. First time cheekpieces may sharpen him up but he may need middle distances next season before he is able to show his very best.
13 BEE MACHINE – Speedy pedigree but he has looked notably short of pace in his three runs for a mark over five furlongs. He steps up to a mile for his nursery debut which is a sizeable change, which has to be of interest. The yard know the time of day with their juveniles and there was plenty of support for this horse as soon as the market opened, well worth a nibble each way given that support from a basement mark.
3 MERCHANT MARINE