Soft ground at Nottingham for today’s eight-race card and there is a competitive 1m 6f fillies’ handicap.
Future heads the market for the Gosdens’ and this half-sister to the Irish Derby winner Latrobe looked ready for a step up in trip when staying on over a mile-and-a-half at Yarmouth on good ground last time. Latrobe stayed 14f but Future has yet to run on soft ground and her dam was a 6f winner. She is thus not certain to appreciate such a thorough test of stamina, but is certainly one to have onside going forward.
I was surprised to see Hartston (2.30) drop back to 10f at Sandown last time having scored at Lingfield on his penultimate start over 12f on good to soft ground. The filly raced nearest to the far rail at the Esher track on a day that the winners were coming centre to stands’ side and I think she will appreciate the step up to a mile-and three-quarters for the first time although that is not guaranteed on breeding.
The each way recommendation is half-sister to six winners up to 12f including recent Cambridgeshire winner Bedouin’s Story but she has hinted that she will be well served by today’s step up in distance. The 10/1 with MansionBet looks fair.
Ten furlongs on soft ground is a severe test for juveniles and I hope to see New Pursuit (4.15) get back to winning ways having looked an unlucky loser at Windsor last time when he was denied a run at a crucial stage and finished full of running back in third. He has been raised 1lb for that defeat, but he is bred to appreciate a thorough test of stamina and his debut success was gained on good to soft ground. There is 4s available at the time of posting but he is as short as 11/4 with 10Bet.
At Sedgefield I hope to see Ottavio (4.33) build on the promise of his recent third at Stratford when he settled much better in his first-time hood than was the case at Newton Abbot on his penultimate start. The headgear is reapplied this afternoon and the 4-y-old is open to further improvement although he is not exactly thrown in from an opening mark of 104. There was 9/2 available when betting opened earlier today but he is a best price of 10/3 with William Hill at the time of posting.
Two trainers who face pivotal campaigns are the Harrys Fry and Whittingham. The latter – who has lost the patronage of his leading owner – saddles a couple of runners at Sedgefield and both have leading claims.
Fry had a difficult season last year – the first from his new base in Dorset – and needs to start quickly. He saddles Literale Ci in the 2m 5f Mares’ handicap hurdle but she has been put in short enough in the betting at 9/4 with William Hill. My two against the field are Sacre Coeur – having his first start for Jonjo O’Neill – and Une De La Seniere (1.30) with preference for the latter.
The selection returns from a near five-month lay-off for the excellent Fergal O’Brien and can run off the same mark as when just touched off over 3m here back in the spring. Her previous win at Plumpton was gained on good ground over 2m 4f and today’s intermediate trip looks ideal. The 4s with Boylesports looks about right.
Sacre Coeur is having her first start for Jonjo and is rated 8lbs lower over timber than she was over fences for Charlie Mann. A market move would be worth noting and the 11/2 with William Hill didn’t last long. She is 4/1 with MansionBet.
El Borracho (3.50) has been in great form of late over fences and is now rated 16lbs lower over timber than he is over the larger obstacles. He reverts to hurdles this afternoon and is taken to land the handicap hurdle for Oliver Greenall. The selection has been ridden more prominently over fences of late and I thought he was given a moderate ride when a never nearer third at Bangor-on-Dee on his last start over timber. The 5/2 didnt last long and he is 7/4 with William Hill at 7pm on Tuesday evening. I know this as Emmerdale has just started.