Good ground forecast at Stratford for today’s eight-race twilight jumps card.
An Hair Lair has been running well over today’s C&D in recent starts for Sheena West and can race from a mark just 4lbs higher than when scoring here on his penultimate start. Oliver Sherwood has not got many summer jumpers, but the mare Makety (6.05) ran a good race on her chase debut at Worcester last month and is taken to go one better.
The selection – 10/3 with Boylesports – won her sole point and had bits of form over timber which suggest she could be well up to winning races off her current mark over the larger obstacles. The form of her second at Worcester on chase debut was given a boost when the third – Just Once who ran at Worcester on Sunday – dotted up next time although that win was gained over hurdles. Makety must carry 12st, but she has the physique to carry weight and she gets the nod ahead of Bagan who looked an unlucky loser when unseating Robbie Dunne here last month.
Captain Cobojay (7.05) had lost his way in recent months for Eamon Sheehy in Ireland but bounced back to something like his best when scoring at Market Rasen on his first start for Justin Landy and he is taken to defy a 5lbs rise.
The selection – 6/5 with William Hill – clearly enjoys summer ground, and he would not want any significant rain. Jockey Callum Bewley rode two winners from two rides here last week and he replaces Jamie Hamilton in the saddle.
I have always thought there were races to be won with Erins Benefit (5.45) over hurdles and she is given one last chance in the Mares’ Maiden Hurdle at Ballinrobe this evening. John Kiely has given the mare a three-month lay-off since finishing third in a similar contest at Cork back in May. Darragh O’Keefe – who has been getting a few opportunities for Henry De Bromhead in recent weeks in the continued absence of Rachel Blackmore – takes over in the saddle for the first time. The 2s with MansionBet looks about right.
There is plenty of pace in the 2m handicap at Ripon this evening where I hope to see Ghadbbaan (6.25) go one better than when runner up at York last time when he was just touched off by Dance To Paris who reopposes on 1lb worse terms. The selection – 3s with 10Bet – does not have to lead but connections now know their 5-y-old is a thorough stayer and he would certainly not want the race to become tactical.
He may find it difficult to get across to the lead from stall seven, but I do hope Cam Hardie gets his mount into a prominent position as they pass the stands with a circuit to run.
William Haggas has been firing in the winners all summer but drew a blank at York last week despite a number of his string running massive races in defeat. He saddles Maajdah (3.00) at Chepstow this afternoon and the filly is taken to follow up her recent Yarmouth success on handicap debut. The selection – 2s with 10Bet – might have been fortunate to beat Farhh To Shy on that occasion but the runner up is one I am looking forward to see run at Yarmouth on Tuesday as she steps up to 7f for the first time.