It is possible that Electric Annie (1.50) was flattered by the margin of victory – 12L – at Wincanton last month given Harry Cobden may have found a piece of faster ground on the outside of the field. That said she was visually very impressive and a 10lbs higher mark may not prevent her following up in the opening mares’ handicap hurdle if in the same mood.
The mare – 10/3 from 4s with MansionBet – hit the line hard over 2m 4f here last month and todays additional 300 metres should not be an inconvenience. Cobden retains the mount for Jack Barber and he gets the vote ahead of Shirocco’s Dream who has done us a couple of favours in recent weeks and has had her wind operated on since scoring at Sandown last time out. She represents a big danger with the Tizzard yard in such good form.
There is a valuable novice chase over 2m 4f and I am prepared to put a line through the Musselburgh run of Kakamora (2.30) on account of the prevailing soft ground and the handicapper has seen fit to drop him 7lbs for his two starts over the larger obstacles to date. The 5s with 10Bet looks a fair each way price – albeit just two places.
I thought the Tom George trained novice ran a terrific race on his chase debut when he faded close home into third over C&D. The winner and runner up have both won since and underfoot conditions should be ideal for this winner between the flags.
Tom George is a yard I barely get right, and they always appear to have small peaks followed by lengthy troughs during the season. They had a winner at Warwick at the weekend and I hope this inmate can follow up.
Felton Bellevue (3.20) jumped and travelled well until a mistake three out when scoring at Hereford last time and today’s step up in trip should suit Ben Case’s gelding who is just 5lbs higher in the weights today. The negative would be if the ground dried out too much, but it was no softer than good to soft at Hereford last time and I expect to see him follow up. He has been put in at 11/8 with William Hill which looks short enough although I would expect him to drift out to something around 2s on raceday.
Alan King has a number of good chances to break his 2022 duck on the card including Sonning in the 2m handicap hurdle. If the 4-y-old learns to settle he can leave behind his early juvenile form. He once finished within 10L of Derby winner Adayar on ground softer than ideal on the level at Nottingham.
King has gone 40 runners without a winner, however, and I feel Aucunrisque (3.50) can confirm last month’s Plumpton form with Sonning on 3lbs worse terms for the 5L he was in front of the King horse last month.
The selection – 13/8 with MansionBet – has, subsequently, gone one better back at Plumpton when he finished 7L in front of Gary Moore’s Mark Of Gold who franked the form by scoring back at the track last week. The inform Dan Skelton saddles Knickerbockerglory and he has been the early mover.