12.20 – Staxton (7/1)
This looks a good opportunity for Staxton to build on his two very creditable runs so far this season, latterly when beaten only a length behind Encrypted in a very hot, three-year-old handicap at York. He now takes on his elders, many of whom are well exposed and all of whom have to concede him weight for age.
As you might imagine, he’s comfortably the most progressive of these and his stable remains in sparkling form with eleven winners in the last fortnight.
12.55 – Dream Of Dreams (13/2)
The Chipchase Stakes can go the way of Dream Of Dreams. His come back run in the Abernant was somewhat unspectacular, but he looked a sprinter to follow at the back end of last year and it may well be that the ground at Newmarket was a touch on the quick side for him.
This synthetic surface might well suit and Sir Michael Stoute, after his excellent Ascot, continues in great form.
1.30 – Chocolate Box (16/1)
16/1 is a pretty good price for a horse who is still improving and is in the form of his life.
He’s done a little bit better with each start this season and interestingly, he ran without cheek pieces last time and they’re back on again here which might elicit some more progress – he’s shown strong form on at least three of the synthetic surfaces and has run in a couple of pretty respectable races here at Newcastle.
He looks a thorough, strong stayer and is from a stable that might be a little over-looked and under-rated.
2.05 – Amazing Red (13/2)
He posted a career best by quite some way at Newmarket last time, but he’d been moving forward up to that point, so it wasn’t a massive surprise.
He’s got very good form on the all weather and he’s half-brother to the stable’s three-time Melbourne Cup runner up, Red Cadeaux, who also ripened with age and this horse is able to race off a 4Ibs lower mark than the handicapper currently thinks he’s worth.
1.10 – Royal Intervention (15/2)
Although she remains a Maiden, she might well have beaten Octave had she had the benefit of experience; Octave has subsequently run a terrific race in defeat behind Calyx at Newmarket, whilst the third, Gypsy Spirt, ran a terrific race when filling the same position at Beverley.
I’m not all that sure Royal Intervention will need to improve that much to take a hand here and it’s notable that three of her siblings achieved a peak RP rating of 110 or higher.
1.45 – Larchmont Lad (4/1)
This is a very, very tight contest, with six of the seven runners rated within 2Ibs of each other, but Larchmont Lad threatened to be better than this as a two-year-old. Then, after one good run this time last year, it didn’t really happen for him.
Since moving to David O’Meara, he’s made steady progress and he ran a very strong race behind the well fancied D’bai around Haydock last time – D’bai is a talented horse who can post impressive speed figures on his day and to run him to a head was a smart effort – any repetition of that and he’s right there.
Odds are provided at time of writing, please check your betslip to confirm they have not changed before betting.
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