There are widespread thunderstorms due to hit Britain and Ireland on Friday and who knows what the ground will be like by the end of racing at today’s meetings. Note there are no all-weather cards with Lingfield running on turf this evening.
Two horses I am looking forward to seeing at Tipperary are Shanroe in the handicap hurdle over 2m and the return of Wonder Laish in the ultra-competitive Grade 3 Grimes Hurdle. Shanroe needs conditions no worse than good to soft, however, while Wonder Laish returns from a 500-day absence for Charles Byrnes in the feature race the Grimes Hurdle.
Some will be using the Grimes Hurdle as a pipe-opener for the Galway Festival next month and the betting should provide us with valuable clues as to which horses are using it as a prep for Ballybrit next month. The booking of Robbie Power is certainly a positive for Wonder Laish and this is a race to savour for all jumps’ fans.
Harrovian was no match for Babbos Boy at Haydock earlier in the month on ground – good to soft – that might have been softer than ideal. He would have been a confident selection on fast ground, but, given the weather forecast, he is reluctantly overlooked at Doncaster in their 10f handicap.
Kaloor (3.55) made a promising return at Haydock over a mile having his first start for David Menusier earlier in the month. This additional quarter mile will suit, and any softening of the ground is considered a plus. Kevin Stott takes over in the saddle and the yard, at the time of writing, have had two winners from their last eight runners. The each way selection is 6/1 at bet365.
At Newmarket Caspian Queen has been raised 3lbs for finishing runner up at Goodwood last week when she looked an unlucky loser. She can race from her old mark this afternoon and leading apprentice Angus Villiers takes off a valuable 5lbs. If the rain stays away, she will be tough to beat.
With rain forecast, however, the vote goes to Donnybrook (2.45) who failed to give 7lbs to a promising sort of Roger Varian’s – Esprit Rose – at Leicester on her reappearance. The selection – 7/2 with Boylesports – will get further in time but scored on heavy ground as a juvenile and looks sure to run a big race with James Doyle taking over in the saddle.
Oisin Murphy takes over on Locket (5.30) who travelled well and was not knocked about when third at Redcar on debut for David O’Meara. Her powerful connections will be keen to get a win next to her name with the paddocks in mind and O’Meara will be hopeful of being sent more horses in the famous Cheveley Park Stud colours. The filly is only 11/10 but she must run a big race in this company.
Additional (7.00) may well have made a winning debut when lugging left in the closing stages at Yarmouth on debut. The runner up ran a very good race in the Britannia off a mark of 89 at Royal Ascot and Martyn Meade has called on the services of Murphy this evening. The hope is that he does not shift left again tonight although he is drawn near the stands’ rail which is often favoured at Lingfield on decent ground. Do note there is not as much rain due to hit Lingfield as with other tracks and the selection is 6/4 with William Hill.
Glen Force (7.30) was an unlucky loser at Haydock on his reappearance when he failed to get a run on the far rail and was forced to switch before finishing with a flourish in third. Sir Mark Prescott’s colt – 2/1 at Boylesports – has only had three career starts and is open to significant improvement. Ryan Tate, who had that luckless passage at Haydock, retains the ride.
For all your racing news go to charliemccann.co.uk