The less said about last week the better! Prior to that this column benefited from a Spencer masterclass on the straight track at Ascot and I’m hoping for more of the same today. Three from Ascot and one from the Tapeta at Wolverhampton:
If ever Jamie Spencer was required it’s with this very talented but somewhat frustrating horse.
Courtside travelled like the winner at Yarmouth before getting caught late and that saw him a beaten favourite for the third race in succession.
He is capable, though, and a stiff seven furlongs should suit him. His middle berth is ideal, his jockey knows him well and is brilliant on the track and I make him a solid bet at 9-2.
He looked every bit the winner at Leicester over seven last time in a first-time tongue tie but was caught late.
A drop back to six furlongs and, crucially, a stiff six looks the right move and he should appreciate another patient ride (I hope they don’t try and force things back in trip).
He did not seem to suit a prominent ride at Kempton, where the winner came from further back but I definitely think there’s room for manoeuvre off his current mark and the 11-1 is very fair.
One day I’ll get this horse right and I make him bet of the day at the prices.
He’s clearly not the soundest but that means he’s lightly raced this year and I think the trip will really suit.
It should, based on his win here in July over a mile and six. The Shergar Cup race he featured in was a funny one where two went clear and he could never get involved and last time at Newmarket again didn’t set up for the closers.
Ryan Moore has won on him before and the combination are a big price at 12-1.
Bolted up over course and distance two runs ago but couldn’t capitalise on a lower turf mark last time.
That came on quick ground, though, and he just doesn’t move like a horse who wants top of the ground for all he's bred to want it.
I’m willing to give him another go back here given that performance last month in what was a decent time. He may be 10lb higher but that means he scrapes into this class four and a winnable one at that at 5-2.
Tom's top tips:
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