At the time of writing there was plenty of rain forecast for Exeter on Monday and ahead of and during today’s six-race card. This failed to materialise, however, and no rain is now due until after 4 o’clock.
Only two go to post for the valuable Best Mate Novices’ Chase which is disappointing but the majority of the seven who are due to race in the near two-and-a-half-mile handicap chase would be inconvenienced if the ground turned softer than good.
The form of Pens Man’s Warwick success has been boosted by the recent runs of the second and third and a 5lbs rise looks fair. He has been put in at 5/4, however, and his ability to handle the ground will have to be taken on trust if the rain gets into the ground.
Caspers Court won a division of the amateur riders’ handicap hurdle on this card 12 months ago and he would have been the recommendation on good ground but, given the forecast, I think Blaze A Trail (3.15) could be overpriced at 12/1.
The ew selection was a dual winner in his native Ireland for Elizabeth Doyle and ran well for a long way on his British debut over a trip too far and he has been dropped 4lbs for that run. His both career successes have been gained on soft ground over today’s trip and he is one who will certainly go in the ground if conditions deteriorate.
** Just to confirm that the forecast rain failed to arrive overnight and I could not recommend Blaze A Trail without significant rain.
At Newcastle, this afternoon I hope to see Dubai Immo (2.15) go one better than when runner up over C&D on debut when slowly away having been drawn out on the wing in stall one. The selection – 11/10 with 10Bet – made a 78 rival fight all the way to the line on that occasion and he is entitled to come on for the experience although I did think the winner – who had to wait for a run – won a shade cosily.
At Kempton, this evening I am looking forward to seeing Antiphon (7.00) return to the track after an absence of six months since he ran a most promising race at Newmarket’s Craven meeting over the minimum trip. The colt – 11/8 with William Hill – steps up in trip by a furlong this evening which will certainly suit and Oisin Murphy keeps the ride for Andrew Balding.
Whoputfiftyinyou made a winning debut ay Haydock last month for Clive Cox but must carry a 7lbs penalty for that victory. The runner up has since gone one better while the third – Sharesa – reopposes today on 7lbs better terms for 3L.
Loving Dash (8.00) is 9lbs higher than when scoring over C&D last time on her first start over 12f and she gets the each way vote in a fascinating handicap for James Fanshawe. The filly – 7/2 with 10 Bet 4 places – has run her best two races on an artificial surface, and I remember she looked sure to play a part in the finish at Nottingham on her penultimate start before finding nothing. She is drawn alongside Diamond Brig who has won his last three and made all to score at Wolverhampton last time.