RACE PREVIEW & TIPS (FRIDAY)

17:55 Goodwood

Balmoral Castle belied market expectations and a lengthy absence when finishing a fine third on his return to action at Windsor last time and bids to land this for a third time, having taken the 2013 and 2014 renewals.

Rakematiz can be forgiven his disappointing run last time as he met trouble quite persistently in the run, prior to that he had looked in good form and the booking of Simon Walker is a major positive here.

French Mix arrives here in search of the hat-trick after victories at Lingfield and most recently Wolverhampton, jockey Hannah Welch clearly gets on well with Alexandra Dunns’ Mare and a good deal of respect is afforded.

Anif and Grandscape are outsiders worth bearing in mind although the vote is handed to four time course and distance winner, Balmoral Castle, who has been given enough time to recover from his eye catching comeback run.

BALMORAL CASTLE (WIN)

18:55 Haydock

Although not the pinnacle of racing excellence this eleven runner sprint handicap looks ultra-competitive with a case easy to make for the majority of the field.

Top weight Mutafarrid has been disappointing of late but a drop in class should help. The yard of trainer Paul Midgley is starting to fire and I couldn’t discount the four year old too readily although his weight may still be a tad too high. If he fails to deliver here I’d put him in your little black book for future reference though.

Rasheeq was very consistent up until his last run. If he can return back to the form he showed previously he’s bound to be in the thick of things.

The horse that gets our vote however is Tim Easterby’s Shortbackandsides who ticks a few boxes when it comes to finding the winner. The four year old returns to a handicap mark lower than he has won at previously, is in a lower grade than he has won in and should have the softer conditions he needs. Although his form figures have been disappointing this term his two runs at Thirsk (where he’s done appallingly at before) should have at least helped with his fitness and a more promising run awaits here.

SHORTBACKANDSIDES (WIN)

The Cambridge News – PicksfromthePaddock.co.uk:

17:55 Goodwood – BALMORAL CASTLE (WIN)

The Jersey Evening Post – Rory Paddock:

18:55 Haydock – SHORTBACKANDSIDES (WIN)

East Anglian Daily Times – Dean Kilbryde:

17:50 Haydock – GHAYYAR (WIN)

Norwich Evening News – Chris Connolly:

18:30 Goodwood – DESERT PALMS (WIN)

Ipswich Star – Matt Polley:

19:05 Goodwood – BIG LACHIE (WIN)