Act Without Fear Or Favour.
The fields for this evening’s Kempton Park card will be more manageable for punters than those on offer at Prestbury Park, and Fear Or Favour is a confident choice to prove his mark is on the lenient side when lining up in the BetBright Mobile Handicap at 8:15. Clive Cox has yet to strike in 2014, but has saddled a quartet of runners-up from just ten AW runners in the calendar year, and he is taken to open his account for the season with the son of Haatef.
Fear Or Favour was quite badly in need of the experience on his 2-y-o debut at Windsor in June behind Rizal Park, but shaped well considering his greenness. He was given a break of 2 months after that initial run, and looked a different proposition when readily landing a fast-ground maiden at Bath at the end of August. Given a nursery mark of 80 on the back of that run, he was far from disgraced in finishing second to the experienced Deeds Not Words at the Somerset track later that month, and that form was enhanced when the winner followed up in a competitive event at Haydock on his next outing.
Fear Or Favour wasn’t tried again as a juvenile, and the handicapper’s decision to drop him a couple of pounds for that effort looks generous, with the winner and third now rated much higher than they were at the time, and several of those in behind helping to underline the depth of that form.
Fitness is an obvious concern after a 6-month absence, but I’ll be amazed if this lightly raced colt isn’t capable of significant improvement. He races in the same colours as Diamond Jubilee and July Cup winner Lethal Force, and while he has a long way to go to be mentioned in the same breath as that high-class sprinter, it can only be a positive that connections have resisted the temptation to geld him over the winter, and he’s certainly one to keep on side.
In the preceding BetBright – Live The Moment Handicap, it may pay to persevere with Spellmaker, who has enjoyed a productive winter, and gave the impression that the assessor hadn’t caught him up when finishing a close third behind Multitask at Lingfield last month. Tony Newcombe’s 5-y-o has struck up a good rapport with up-and-coming apprentice Eoin Walsh, and while he has a tendency to take a keen hold in his races, he can always be relied upon to give his running when conditions are in his favour, with a trio of C&D to his name since November. He’ll continue to pay his way.
The BetBright Maiden Stakes at 6:45 looks an excellent opportunity for recent Wolverhampton second Elusive George to shed his maiden tag, and he looked rather unlucky to be nailed on the line on what was his racecourse bow. He looked a surefire future winner on that occasion, and is readily preferred to the more experienced Almargo in what looks a match.
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