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13:40 Chester

The opening race both here at Chester and on ITV this Saturday sees a handful of three year olds go head to head in this sprint contest over the minimum 5 furlong trip.

Although it may be sure to bite me on the backside and undoubtedly come back to haunt me but I can somewhat readily dismiss Mark Johnston's Eye Of Heaven who was woeful on their seasonal reappearance in a less competitive race at Bath. No doubt he'll come on for that performance but I couldn't be convinced, especially from stall 4.

Lost My Sock remains a seven race maiden and has the worst draw of the lot so can be scratched off my list as well.

Havagomecca did well to win in their last performance and looks to be on an upward curve. A consistent enough type who seems to be progressing but I fear this may be a step too far for her now she's up against horses of this calibre. Tackling Class 3 company for the first time I wouldn't be shocked to see her go close but likely to find at least one too good.

And then we're left with two, both of whom are the current joint favourites. Rebel At Dawn and Virginia Plane deserve their spot at the head of the market and on their merits a case can easily be made for either, however it's the top weight, who's giving a stone away to the latter, that gets my vote.

It's perhaps easy to forget that Rebel At Dawn has competed at group level in their career so far and has gone well in big field, ultra competitive races both at York and over in Ireland at Naas. If the gelding can cope with their current rating I'm hoping class can see this front runner, who should be suited by Chester, finish in front.


written by Rory Paddock


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