Epsom stage todays feature card, which begins with a 7f Nursery. Richard Hannon’s Lexington Grace won a Newmarket seller last time and will have her supporters, but Richard Fahey has saddled the winner of this corresponding event twice in the last four years and there may be more to come from his Panophobia (2.00).
The selection had the worst of the draw when finishing third at Musselburgh off this mark last time and Adam McNamara takes off a valuable 3lbs today. The selection improved for the switch to fast ground last time, and he could be well treated off what is a very lowly mark. I will be checking the market to see if there is any confidence behind Hard Graft who races as if the step up to today’s trip will suit.
I’m A Star is bred to appreciate the step up to a mile but We Know (2.35) is an interesting newcomer for Simon Crisford and gets a narrow vote on his racecourse debut. The selection is fitted with a tongue-tie for his racecourse debut but the booking of Oisin Murphy would suggest connections are hopeful of a big run.
Oh It’s Saucepot is clearly going the right way but her two recent wins have been gained with cut in the ground and she is 10lbs higher today than when scoring at Newmarket last month. Things have not quite gone Bayston Hill’s (4.50) way since he won under Daniel Muscutt at Bath back in May and the selection has shown that he acts well on tracks with plenty of undulations.
He didn’t get competitive over a mile here back in April, but this is his trip and he can go close for the yard of Mark Usher who had a good winner at Deauville at the weekend.
At Ripon Veejay (3.25) is 3lbs higher than when second at Haydock over 7f last time and this additional furlong should suit the Mick Channon juvenile who has won two of his four career starts. The obvious danger looks the Mark Johnston trained filly Noble Manners although she is 8lbs higher than when scoring over 7f at HQ when last seen at the end of July.
Jamie Spencer gets on well with Hugin who has won two of his four starts this season but Rodaini (4.00) finished runner up in the Free Handicap at the Craven Meeting back in April and a return to a mile should suit Simon Crisford’s charge who is dropped in grade this afternoon.
Alexander M (4.30) cannot be opposed after running out a 6l winner at Chester at the weekend for which he escapes a penalty given that was a boy’s event. The selection has won three of his last five starts and PJ McDonald, who rode Dream Today to win the Convivial Maiden for the yard at York, takes the ride.
At Newton Abbot Get Ready Freddy has been raised 20lbs for scoring at Worcester at the beginning of the month for Dan and Harry Skelton and he has since been beaten over timber. He must go close but Third Act (5.05) is well treated on his best form and hinted at a return to form when second over C&D last time. The winner only got as far as the third at Stratford at the weekend so the form is hard to assess but he gets the vote for the yard of Colin Tizzard.