I’ve changed my mind on this race a few times but BLACKHEATH gets the final nod. He doesn’t have the attractive profile of some of today’s rivals but his win at Leicester in July made him look like a horse who could land a nice race sometime and he shaped well on a couple of his starts since. Newmarket may not have been ideal last time and I think he can do better over a speedy, turning 7f. With some luck in the run, he should finish fast and hopefully it’s fast enough to take the top spot.
COTE D’AZUR hasn’t won for a while but looks a cracking bet at any double-figured odds. He is partly priced at that level due to finishing mid-division when dropped to this Class 4 company at Chester seven weeks ago but that defeat is understandable as the fractions set were too strong and those who were ridden to finish did exactly that whilst all the prominent racers weakened. As such, I find it hard to place too much negative emphasis on the performance (also had a wide draw to overcome).
Previous to that outing, Les Eyre’s charge had shaped with promise in a 0-90 at York and I don’t think it will take a huge improvement on that to trouble the best of these. Reverting to the All-Weather is the minor question mark but he bolted up over C&D for Sir Mark Prescott in 2016 and was rated 95 for his only two AW ventures with this yard. Off 79, he’s 11lbs below his last winning mark and there does not seem to be an excess of pace on here, which will aid him further if he leads. All in all, he’s a 2pt bet!
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