Grendisar won this race last year and returns looking for a fourth course and distance success. He has a good record of four wins and eight placed efforts from fourteen here at Lingfield and has only just failed to get up in his last two attempts here, finishing a close second on both occasions. It would be a surprise if he were not involved at the finish but on this occasion preference is for Godolphins Festive Fare.
The Charlie Appleby four year old is unbeaten on the all-weather with three wins from three and the trainer has a 30% winning strike rate here at Lingfield. Already the early favourite for both the Winter Derby and Easter Classic he will need to put in a good performance to stay at the head of the markets but should have the quality to needed to keep his 100% record intact.
Lamar is another with a very strong all weather record and has never finished outside the places when racing here at Lingfield. She was just a half length behind Grendisar (2nd and 3rd respectively) when they last met over course and distance here in December and will no doubt put up a strong fight again today.
Festive Fare (WIN)
15:50 Ffos Las
Clyne has only had 5 career runs yet has already shown a liking for Ffos Las with two course and distance wins to his name, one on soft ground and the other on heavy, beating the re-opposing Bishop Wulstan by almost five lengths when they last met here in December. He is up against a couple of decent runners today but beat last years winner of this race last time out and should be capable of continuing his good run of form here.
Cotillion had a run on the flat at Chelmsford City on Thursday and returns to hurdles over a trip where he has three wins and one placed effort from eight. This will be his first run at the Welsh venue but his most recent victories have come on soft and heavy ground so with distance and ground conditions to suit he has to be considered a serious contender.
Cappielow Park has won three from his last four when racing over today’s trip and with jockey David Noonans claim he is effectively 2lbs lower than his last winning mark. Trainer Ali Brewer hasn’t had much luck over the last twelve months with her hurdlers, with only three winners from forty-eight runners, however Cappielow Park won two of those and is another who should have a good chance of making the first three at the very least.
Beau Lake beat Cappielow Park over a longer trip in December 2014 but has put in three poor performances so far this season. He would have to put in a much improved performance to get involved today but with a winning strike rate of 30% over today’s trip means he cannot be totally discounted either.
Early favourite Bon Enfant has won three of his four career starts and is two from two over hurdles so has to be respected. However he had to work very hard to win at odds of ¼ last time out in what was only an race and none of his rivals that day have gone on to record any worthwhile form so he may be vulnerable today.
Arquebusier has won two of his last three but was eight lengths behind the winner when second last time out and has gone up a further 6lbs so may struggle off what is a career high mark.
Pinnacle Panda was a winner when last seen on New Years Eve but that was over two miles and his only attempt over this longer trip saw him well beaten. He may do better with Dickie Johnson taking over in the saddle but preference is for Perceus.
Perceus has won one over todays’ race distance and placed twice over shorter trips in his three career runs over hurdles so far, chasing home the exciting Sceau Royal last time out over two miles.. Although seven lengths behind the Alan King trained Triumph Hurdle 2nd favourite he was 14 lengths ahead of third and a further 19 lengths ahead of fourth and will be much more at home returning to this longer trip.
Perceus (E/W if 9/2+)