The second day of Newmarket’s Craven meeting looks a cracker with, by recent standards, above-average renewals of the bet365 Earl of Sefton, the bet365 European Free Handicap as well as a significant field for the Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes.
However, those all look like races to watch rather than betting events for me. I am looking to Beverley and Cheltenham for my bets, which all should be decent prices.
He may never quite fulfil the expectations of a couple of seasons ago, but he is certainly in the right yard to start making progress again and there is no better trainer in taking one from another stable and getting them back on an upward curve.
The signs were pretty good from Encore Champs on his only run so far for Dan Skelton. Reverting to hurdles after disappointing over fences for Warren Greatrex, he was given a quiet introduction after a wind operation and has been dropped 1lb since.
This horse has been unfortunate in that he has been raised very quickly for modest wins both over hurdles and fences, but the handicapper has relented now.
He is running from a mark nearing towards his career-high from a few years ago, but he signalled that he might just have improved last time with a really good run in a very competitive Newcastle sprint.
That was his first run after a break - and more specifically a wind operation - and it definitely looked to have worked as he went down very narrowly.
Stall 1 could be ideal here as he looks set to track pace-setting Queen’s Order (no blinkers which worked well last time) and, if that horse drifts off the rail close home, it could work out perfectly for Nibras Again to stride through. He was a course and distance winner last summer in a similar event.
This mare never really got going last season and her form and rating plummeted. However, she did run her best race last season – and by some way - on her reappearance, and she won on her seasonal debut in 2019 on her first run for this yard.
Ruth Carr’s runners seem to be hitting their stride a bit quicker than is sometimes the case and this course suits Kylie Rules very well, especially if there is a strong place which is guaranteed here.
I am fairly sure she would have retired this mare to the paddocks if she felt that she had lost her form completely, so I am definitely prepared to risk backing her down in grade on her first run of the season.
I have Mick Easterby’s Casilli in my tracker for when she steps up in trip and will be watching the market closely, but I am guessing it will be mid-season for her.Add an unlimited number of horses into your Racing TV Tracker and never miss a winner again! Click here for more details.
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