The ground was described as good at Ripon on Sunday ahead of their seven-race card. There is the prospect of further showers.
In the 1m 6f handicap I thought Solar Screen (3.07) bumped into a very well handicapped rival when runner up – albeit beaten over 4L – on good to soft ground at Salisbury last time. The winner should have followed up under a penalty next time and a return to good ground will suit. The grey was given too much to do under Jamie Spencer at Goodwood earlier in the campaign from a 2lbs higher mark and I hope Silvestre De Sousa will go forward from stall one. The 5s with BetVictor looks about right.
This 14f trip should be ideal for Artic Fox who travelled well but failed to get home over two miles at York last time. She had previously run well behind subsequent Northumberland Plate winner Nicholas T back on the Knavesmire and she would have been the recommendation had she not been drawn out on the wing in stall ten. There was 13/2 with William Hill somehow on Sunday but he is 4s with BetVictor at the time of posting on Sunday.
The lightly raced Big Boy Bobby (4.12) is fitted with first-time cheekpieces by Roger Charlton as he bids to go one better than when second in a 0-75 Classified contest at Nottingham last time. The selection -11/4 with Boylesports – is 2lbs higher this afternoon and is 4lbs worse off with Myristica, but I feel he is open to considerable improvement having had just two starts so far this term and five in his career.
In the finale at Windsor this evening Glen Esk is bidding for a quick hat-trick and the handicapper has certainly given him a chance given is only 1lb higher than when scoring at Haydock last month. Both that success and his earlier win over this evening’s C&D were gained on fast ground, however, and the ground was described as good to soft on Sunday with further showers forecast. If there is no significant rain the 13/8 is fair.
William Cox was in the plate when Carp Kid (8.15) scored at Lingfield over 10f back in June and he has continued to run well in defeat in two subsequent starts over slightly further. The combination of a return to ten furlongs on ground with a bit of ease should be ideal and I would expect John Flint’s 6-y-old to go forward from stall six. He is the ew alternative at 9s with Mansionbet.
In the finale at Carlisle – a card for female only riders – Stormin Norman (8.00) won the corresponding 2m 1f handicap the last time it was staged back in 2019 and he can follow up despite being 12lbs higher in the weights. Micky Hammond – who saddles two in the race – fits his 6-y-old with first time cheekpieces’ and Becky Smith has been in the plate for four of his six career wins including a novice hurdle at Sedgefield back in October. I have backed the ew recommendation and 9/2 with William Hill still looks fair.