Kempton 14:15 Tom Dascombe has started to find some form over the last week or so having saddled three winners from his last eight runners and he looks to have a great chance of another winner here with three-time course and distance winner Dana’s Present. He returned from a near three month break with a decent second at Windsor last week and is still 1lbs below his last winning mark. Mcdelta was a ready winner last time out on his first outing for Ian Williams and keeps cheekpieces on in the hope they can do the trick again. He has placed over course and distance twice this year but has a 4lbs rise to contend with for his recent win which makes him 6lbs higher than when when posting both placed efforts. Pike Corner Cross has posted his best efforts here at Kempton, having posted his only career win over course and distance and has also placed twice over the same trip. He is still 5lbs higher than that sole success but has been racing over further in recent races and should benefit from the drop back in trip. Not many others jump off the page although Star Of The Stage boasts a 50% winning strike rate over todays’ trip and may well appreciate the step back up to a mile but has looked held off his current mark on two prior runs and probably has place claims at best. Dana’s Present (E/W if 9/2+)
Leicester 18:40 The market opened with four co-favourites for this race, suggesting that we are looking at a competitive little Class 4 handicap. Classic Pursuit won on penultimate run and was third last time out over a shorter trip. He is effectively running off the same mark as his recent win with Josephine Gordon’s 3lbs claim taken in to account, however has done all his winning in lower grades. Reputation hasn’t won since a maiden over twelve months ago but that doesn’t tell the whole story as he ran very well in the Qatar Stakes at Goodwood and John Quinn has been in great recent form with six winners and three placed from eighteen in the last two weeks. A 2lbs rise won’t make things any easier but the ease in grade will help and he is very much one to keep on side of. At a slightly bigger price Ballymore Castle needs to be considered despite being a shade disappointing in the Stewards Sprint Handicap at Goodwood last time out. He is best judged on penultimate run when a half length second to Fang, finishing ahead of a next time out winner, and benefits from Adam Mcnamara’s 5lbs claim here. Although he is yet to break his duck he has placed in almost 50% of races over todays’ trip and trainer Richard Fahey has a 25% winning strike rate and £41 level stakes profit to a £1 stake over the last twelve months at Leicester so he is the one i’m siding with. Of the remainder, Tanasoq scored as Salisbury last time out following three consecutive third placed efforts but this looks a tough race for a follow up, while Signore Piccolo improved on recent runs to take second at Hamilton last month and has won off higher marks in the past, although jockey D Nolan has a poor strike rate for David O’Meara and hasn’t had a winner in recent weeks. Ballymore Castle (E/W if 9/2+)
Leicester 19:10 Monopoli hasn’t won for over two years but his five runs over course and distance have produced all three career wins and he’s finished a close second once, this being the most recent off a 7lbs higher mark than he races off today. His last two races at Beverley suggested that a return to form wasn’t too far away so i’m happy to take a chance at an early each way price that he has what it takes to get his nose in front again. The biggest danger could be Anneani who won on debut for David Evans at Wolves last month. He was almost three lengths clear of second so on the face of it the 7lbs raise should be manageable, however this actually puts him on a career high mark and he is yet to make the frame in three attempts over todays’ trip so is passed over here. Most of the others have been struggling for any kind of recent form, with the exception of Becca Campbell who won over ten furlongs last time out but gets a 3lbs rise for her trouble, while Canny Style managed a third last time out but was still over four lengths behind the winner. Monopoli (E/W if 9/2+)
This weeks episode we discuss The “Charles Byrne’s Coup”, the image of racing, Frankie’s 3000th winner, York’s Ebor meeting, give some antepost tips for The Nunthorpe and Ebor Handicap and more… LISTEN NOW!
If you needed any other incentive to read our brand new Turf Talk Podcast then one of our “Horses To Follow” runs at Leicester tonight. Find out which horse it is right here.