8.15pm Wolverhampton Tips & Betting Preview 25/03/2017

This is a competitive Class 4 handicap over the minimum trip, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Miracle Garden is lingering on a winning mark and will be winning soon but it may pay to stick with EXCELLENT GEORGE. Stuart Williams and Aaron Jones have a good record when partnering up and he should strip fitter for his recent run and can show some improvement to win here. Foxy Forever is another on a workable mark but his long wait for a win may continue here with top weight to contend with.

1 FOXY FOREVER – Has failed to score since June 2015 over 5 furlongs at the Curragh and has dropped from a mark of 101 to today’s rating of 81. He steps back down in class following a heavy defeat at Chelmsford earlier this month when beaten 9 lengths and that should give him better claims here having only been beaten by a distance of 1 length on two occasions in January in Class 4 company. He looks on a feasible mark but he’s not getting his head in front where it matters and stall 11 is the worst draw in the field. Best watched again.

2 SANDRA’S SECRET – 3 wins from 16 career starts all on the turf and makes only her third All-Weather start today. She was well beaten at the end of last year in similar company to this off today’s mark and she makes her seasonal return today. She’s tricky to recommend today on the back of that break combined with her record on the sand and her trainer has only recorded 1 win from 46 runners here. Avoided in this.

3 EXCELLENT GEORGE – C&D winner and is starting to fall back to a reasonable mark having been punished for a success in a Newmarket handicap last July. He certainly ran a more promising run on his last start over 6 furlongs at Kempton than his two previous outings on the sand last Autumn and he should come on again for that run for a yard that knows the time of day (19% strike rate here). Has definite claims in this even if his overall record is a little disappointing.

4 FOXTROT KNIGHT – Hasn’t won since completing a double back in June 2015 and is now just 1lb higher than that last victory. He drops down to Class 4 company for that first time since June last year and he did post three seconds in better races than this across last summer. He may be slightly better on the turf but this is only his seventh run on the sand and it’s best to keep an open mind at this stage. Has definite claims but yard in very poor form of late and is returning from a 193-day break. Best watched in this.

5 ZIPEDEEDODAH – Has been in good heart this winter with three victories to his name since November including two over C&D. He beat the progressive You’re Call at Chelmsford back in February and he did well to finish as close as he did to Verne Castle on his last run at Lingfield. His best performances have all come in a weaker grade so remaining in Class 4 company is slightly off-putting but he is in good heart and will need something of a career best off this career high mark. Others make more appeal.

6 ROSEALEE – Ran a lovely race on her last start to finish 1/4 of a length behind the well-handicapped Make Music. The handicapper has only nudged her up 1lb for that effort which looks very fair although she still remains 3lbs higher than her last winning mark. She’s won three races and placed four times on the All-Weather to date and she should go well again for a yard that have sent out two winners from their last 8 runners. Respected but others look better treated at the weights.

7 VAN GERWEN – Second runner in this for Les Eyre and this horse makes his seasonal return from a 135-day break. He’s won off marks of 68 and 73 (both in a lower grade than this) and he’s still 4lbs higher than his last win which tempers enthusiasm. Both wins have come on the turf and he makes his tapeta debut here so is probably best watched on the back of that and Nathan Evans rides his stablemate having won on this runner before. Hood left off for the first time since May 2016.

8 BALLESTEROS – Completed a double at the very end of the turf season last year off marks of 79 and 85, both by a neck and has struggled since. He did show something when only beaten a length at Lingfield in February but that was over 6 furlongs and his best performances have come over that trip so today’s 5 furlongs is a slight doubt. A mark of 75 should be workable and Paul Hanagan is booked (25% strike rate last 14 days) so he’s worthy of respect here.

9 INVINCIBLE RIDGE – Closely tied with a couple in this and he went close in February with two seconds over 5 and 6 furlongs here. Both opportunities were there for the taking and the handicapper has been fair and left him on a mark of 75. He should be competitive again but he’s had his chances off this mark and he’s certainly lost that turn of foot he used to have so it’s a little surprise to see him over 5 furlongs again and not 6. Neil Farley takes over and has another chance on paper.

10 MIRACLE GARDEN – C&D winner and was unlucky over C&D last time out when finding all the trouble in the world before finishing third. The handicapper has left him unchanged for that effort and he steps back up in class here which will make life tougher but he’s obviously on a workable mark and should be competitive today although stall 10 makes things more complicated. He’s respected but may be seen to better effect on another day.

11 NORMAL EQUILIBRIUM – Similar profile to Invincible Ridge and had two good chances to record a victory in two weaker contests than this. He was beaten by a nose just two days ago by Malaysian Boleh and that was disappointing given he really should have won off this career low mark. Connections have been smart by putting the useful David Egan on board to claim 7lbs so he’s very well treated at the weights but he is taking on more difficult opponents and he’s deserted today.

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