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The Price Is Right: Celebrate with champagne at Catterick on Thursday

Thu 2 Jul 2020

The Tote's Kevin O'Malley selected a 7-2 winner and 16-1 runner-up from his three selections on Wednesday and reveals another three dark horses for Thursday's racing action.

By Kevin O'Malley, www.tote.co.uk

The first pair of dark horses to look out for on Thursday will be running at Catterick, with their nine-race card, live on Racing TV, getting underway at 12.15pm. We also have a Tony Carroll-trained runner looking to run well again at a favoured track.

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1.20 Catterick: CHAMPAGNE MONDAYS

Trainer Scott Dixon has gone 41 runs and 179 days since his last winner and is very much on the cold list. Far from being a strong pointer towards an imminent change of fortunes, but Dixon did saddl two huge outsiders on Tuesday and neither were beaten that far.

On Thursday, he runs CHAMPAGNE MONDAYS in the 1,20pm at Catterick. This four-year-old runs from a pound out of the handicap here off a rating of 46, and he’s essentially a limited performer.

However, he went off at 25-1 for his return to action at Lingfield last month and ran quite well to finish fifth having been slowly away.

Champagne Mondays usually has more early speed, which is often what you need to secure a decent position over shorter trips at Catterick. Hopefully, with that opening run under his belt, he’ll be a little sharper here and can get across from stall seven to secure a decent early pitch.

This is a competitive heat, but Kieran Schofield brings the horse’s racing weight down to 8st 5lb and with some rain expected, Champagne Mondays is one for the shortlist at double-figure odds.

2.20 Catterick: KODIMOOR

It is perfectly likely that, should the ground soften up as a result of unsettled weather, races will develop down the stands’ side over seven furlongs, which would give Mark Walford’s veteran KODIMOOR a good chance to break well, travel, and hopefully run a nice race here on his second outing of the season.

Kodimoor has run here ten times and is no stranger to Catterick, with one win and two placed efforts at the track.

He ran a similar race in August on soft ground here and ran a cracker from a high draw, when the leaders raced wide off the bend towards the stands.

He finished second there from a 2lb higher mark and with him set to face the same conditions on Thursday, this seven-year-old has the stage set fair for another good run.

He does need things to go his way, but hopefully Kodimoor can reward Win and Place backers at a decent price. Phil Denis takes over from regular pilot Dougie Costello and the usual cheek-pieces remain in place.

3.10 Bath: ESSAKA

There is a reasonable amount of win and place form on offer in this handicap contest over an extended five furlongs.

With plenty of track experience to his name though, I’ll take a punt on a horse knocking on the door of a good run in the shape of Tony Carroll’s ESSAKA.

This eight-year-old needed the run here last month and did spring to mind as one to watch next time. It is possible he needs a bit more help from the assessor, but it’s worth noting his best run of 2019 was from a 3lb higher mark under these conditions, so he is capable of going close off this rating.

Tony Caroll’s string is in very good nick having recorded six winners from 38 runners in the past 14 days. He may be well backed this one, so keep an eye on the market.

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