Newton Abbot stage an eight-race card this afternoon on good ground which has been watered in recent days to maintain perfect summer jumping ground with no rain forecast.
In the extended 2m 5f handicap hurdle I hope to see Parody (2.50) go one better than when runner up at Bangor-on-Dee having her first start for almost 12 months. The Paul Nicholls’ trained mare won twice over today’s C&D last summer on fast ground and carries just 10st 4lbs this afternoon. The early 3s with William Hill looked too big but 11/4 remains a fair price.
Pagero made a mockery of two handicaps when last seen for Jonjo O’Neill back in December but the handicapper has had his say, and he is now 15lbs higher than when scoring at Doncaster. His subsequent absence from the track is a slight concern and both wins were gained with plenty of cut in the ground. That said a market move would be worth noting for such powerful connections.
Roar (3.20) shapes as if he will get a bit further over timber than the minimum trip, but he had been in good form on the level in recent weeks before finishing second at Bangor-on-Dee reverting to hurdles last time. His flat mark of 74 suggests he could be well handicapped from a mark of 106 over hurdles and duel purpose trainer Ed de Giles had a good winner at Goodwood last week. The 5s with bet365 looked a shade too big although he is still available at 9/2 with BetVictor.
For Good Measure (3.50) was never placed to challenge on his reappearance in the Summer Plate at Uttoxeter, but I hope to see Richard Johnson put the nine-year-old in the race this afternoon. Trainer Philip Hobbs has made a slow start to the new campaign, but he did have a winner at Market Rasen last week and I hope to see a much-improved show from his nine-year-old this afternoon. The ew selection is 5s at bet365.
The Nicholls’ trained Soldier Of Love is a worthy favourite having won his last couple, but his jumping did not impress over today’s C&D last time, has been raised another 4lbs for that success and, at a general 8/11, looks short enough in the market.
At Lingfield this evening I hope to see Publicist (4.05) put behind a poor run on rain-softened ground at Doncaster back in June when she was sent off Even money favourite but faded to finish fourth. The filly – 5/2 with 10bet – had previously finished in the same position at Newmarket on debut although that race is not working out as well as could have been expected. Her draw in stall seven – of eight – is less than ideal and the Tate yard, despite a winner at Thirsk last week, are not exactly firing on all cylinders, but she is a half-sister to six winners and has been given plenty of time to get over her moderate run in south Yorkshire.
There is significant rain forecast for Ayr on Tuesday with further showers forecast for Wednesday ahead of today’s nine-race card. In the 1st division of the 7f handicap Big City (3.10) broke on terms at Hamilton over a mile last time and ran his best race yet for Roger Fell. The selection – 4s with bet365 – won on heavy ground as a juvenile for Saeed Bin Suroor and is a son of Zoffany whose progeny often like plenty of cut in the ground. If the rain arrives, he looks sure to run a big race having improved for the application of blinkers in recent starts.