After a good Saturday but a largely frustrating week it was nice to have a 35/1 treble on Monday with all three selections striking gold. That said I was kicking myself for not persevering with Jewel In The Crown who was desperately unlucky at Sandown last time and duly bolted up at Windsor – one that got away.
There is the prospect of showers overnight and into the morning at Worcester on top of watered (good) ground. I hope they have not overwatered with rain due.
The Big Sting could provide one at Worcester but no significant rain please
I have looked at THE BIG STING’s point-to-point form and have concluded that he is potentially very well treated from a mark of ninety this afternoon although he looks to need good ground to be seen at his best – hence my weather watch.
Harry Fry doesn’t have many summer jumpers and the 7-y-old was trained by Christopher Barber to win six of eight starts between the flags since November. He has been on the go for eight months and showed little under rules previously for Fry in Bumpers or over hurdles, but those efforts were on soft ground, and he looks to have come into his own since the transition to a sound surface.
The mare Ballymilan has won her last couple over fences and four of her last seven starts yet has been raised just a stone for those four successes. She is clearly progressing well over fences and looks sure to run another big race.
Known was a promising novice hurdler when with Nicky Henderson and makes his chase debut for Jonjo O’Neill today. Jersey is another having his first start over fences for a top yard and is worth a check in the market but, granted good ground, I do feel The Big Sting will be tough to beat.
Shane Quinlan has been in the plate for two of OUT FOR JUSTICE’s four career wins including when scoring over C&D from an 8lbs higher mark last May. This is Katy Price’s 9-y-old’s second start since a wind procedure, and he was given far too much to do over three miles at Ffos Las on his latest start in a race where they missed out all over the fences in the home straight due to the low sun.
Peter Bowen’s Judge Earl had not beaten a horse in his last four starts – pulled up three times and last of five – prior to winning last time out at Ffos Las. He remains fairly treated on his best hurdles form for Richard Fahey and he represents a big danger from a 7lbs higher mark.
On The Bandwagon has more to offer over fences for Jonjo O’Neill and he went down fighting on just his second start over fences to a well backed Kerry Lee horse last time. A 2lbs rise seems fair and he is another to consider although I do feel the Price horse looks sure to go close.
The ground was quick at Musselburgh on Monday evening and conditions look sure to be on the fast side of good for this afternoon’s card.
It is almost three years and 24 starts since IRV got his head in front but Micky Hammond has his string in excellent form and Ben Curtis takes over in the saddle for the first time this afternoon as he looks to end his long losing run.
The 6-y-old is 22lbs lower than when last successful – only ever won at York – and ran his best race of the season when just touched off at Beverley last time from a 1lb lower mark. The winner – Clotherholme - did little for the form when well held here on Monday, but that was over 7f, and he is better at eight or nine furlongs.
Recommendation: Irv at
The form of DUBAI WELCOME’s C&D second on his first start for 589 days was given a huge boost when the winner – Pearl Beach - finished a running on third in a listed race at Newcastle over the weekend over an inadequate 10f.
The selection was a shade too keen here last time but should be more amenable to restraint with that outing under his belt. His C&D record reads 2-1-2. Hollie Doyle did us a big favour for Saeed bin Suroor with Arabian Warrior at Newcastle on Saturday and he rode the selection last time out.
Ray Dawson takes over in the saddle this evening although Doyle is at the track and will ride Hughie Morrison’s Lady Percival – a half-sister to the yard’s Quickholm. She looks the main danger.
The opening quote of 6/4 looks a bit on the skinny side for the selection, but I do expect to get 2s or bigger on raceday.
The progressive stayer Murau is a non-runner in the 2m handicap, and I hope that leaves the door open for MOEL ARTHUR (Nap) who steps up to this trip for the first time tonight.
The form of his latest second at Sandown over 1m 6f has been franked by the wins of the third – Dancing Harry and sixth – Arabian Warrior – and he was staying on all the way to the line at the Esher track. He promises to be well served by the additional quarter of a mile, is a previous winner on polytrack and has only had six career starts.
I appreciate he is not bred for two miles – Juddmonte cast off – but if he switches off in the opening mile then I will be very disappointed if he doesn’t run a very big race. There is a bit of pace in the race with Mukha Magic and Winterwatch likely to go forward which should suit the 4-y-old.
* Betting odds are subject to changes.