After a couple of wins we’ve had to settle for some places. While that’s still profit in the bank, we’ve gone to Surrey to try to rectify that, as I have doubts over the two horses leading the market in the 2:10 at Sandown. Both my selection, and the main danger to it, offer great each way odds, but it’s the being dropped back to seven furlongs that catches my eye and makes me plump for the former.
This unexposed three-year-old gelding cost 40,000 guineas as a yearling and didn’t show too much in his three 7f starts as a two-year-old. That said, his two runs on turf at least showed promise against some rivals now officially rated 100 plus (Racing Post Rating, or RPR). He also ran poorly on the All-Weather to finish the last of nine at Kempton on his final start last October. His performance back on turf on his seasonal reappearance over this 7f trip at Newmarket four weeks ago was an improvement however, when he finished a running-on 5.75 lengths 4th of 12. It was a decent effort considering he was facing race-fit rivals while he was coming back from a 219-day break. The form of the race is also working out well with the winner having finished a length 2nd of 11 off a 7lb higher mark, in a higher Class, just 13 days later. The 3rd placed horse – who finished just in front of the selection – beat nine rivals to win at Lingfield next time out. So, it looks like he may have wintered well.
His best run last year came over this course and distance last August where he showed he handled the track, although he was ultimately outclassed in a much higher quality race than this. The eight horses that finished in front of him, who met him running off level-weights, have gone on to be officially rated as high as 114, 107, 95, 98, 84, 84, 72, & 88 (RPRs). His mark of just 69 today gives cause for optimism as he comes in to this well-handicapped.
He is entitled to strip fitter for his recent run and he is open to improvement being less exposed than most of his rivals having just his fifth career start today. He is also well-drawn in stall two and Adam Kirby takes over in the saddle from an apprentice. There are several in form types in this race, with a couple coming off a win, but he receives between 6lb & 8lb from his three main rivals at the head of the market so looks weighted to go close. Provided he takes another step forward TELL’EM NOWT is well-worth an each way bet in this 11-runner race.
This Richard-Hannon-trained, three-year-old colt won’t lack fitness. It’s his fourth start since the 25th of April and the eye is drawn to the first-time booking of Hollie Doyle. He has shown ability and caught my eye running-on 13 days ago over 6f at Salisbury, where he finished 4.25 lengths 4th of 14. Still about 10th and travelling strongly behind horses with two furlongs to go his momentum was slowed at least twice before a gap finally opened. He would have finished much closer with a clear run and is interesting now stepped up in trip. He’s tackling handicaps off a workable looking mark of 69 and, provided he handles today's firmer surface, should go well.
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