After a quiet week for fans of the Flat following the short pause in the all-weather season there’s not only the start of the British turf season at Doncaster this weekend to look forward to, but also a couple of all-weather meetings at Lingfield and Wolverhampton on Monday afternoon, while the Racing TV cameras will be at Wincanton to take in a six-race card.
I have found three fancies, with one at each of the meetings appealing as horses to back.
Dark Magic is without a win since taking a Newmarket maiden on his second career outing in July 2017 but has dropped to a potentially lenient handicap mark and the recent signs have been that he could be ready to take advantage.
A fast-finishing short-head second to Spirit Of Zebedee (a winner again since) here on is penultimate start, Dean Ivory’s five-year-old didn’t build on that near miss at Kempton last time but he wasn’t ideally positioned in a race which few got into and he did stick to his task reasonably well again.
On both occasions he has looked like he who would benefit from returning to a longer trip so today’s step back to up 7f is a big plus and granted some luck from his inside berth in stall 3 he should go close.
A few of these tend to lead or race prominently so at least a fair gallop should be on the cards and that will suit the strong-travelling Miranda.
A useful three-time winner on the Flat in France, the Paul Nicholls trained daughter of Camelot has taken well to hurdling with wins at Ludlow and then over this course and distance - on both occasions barely having to come out of first gear to score with any amount in hand.
Those races were not the strongest and though the handicapper hasn’t taken many chances on bare form, allotting her an opening mark of 130, she has given me the impression that she has more ability than that kind of rating and with her four-year-old allowance a useful aid against more exposed rivals she can land the hat-trick.
Griggy clocked good times in relation to his mark on both starts in handicap company for Richard Fahey and can belatedly prove himself to be a well-treated horse with a first win on his fourth outing in handicap company.
A huge eye-catcher on his first start for new connections over 5f here four weeks ago, the way he went through that race and finished off strongly having had to wait for a run suggests he is in top form.
With the return to 6f in his favour, plus a good draw in stall 2 and Adam Kirby aboard again he rates the best bet of the day.