RACING PREVIEW – Monday 26th May – CARLISLE, CARTMEL, CHEPSTOW, LEICESTER, REDCAR
3:50 Totesport Betextra Zetland Gold Cup (Heritage Handicap), Class 2, 1m 2f
First Buddy (10/1) won a fast-ground maiden and has been impressive in winning two handicaps from the front. Raised 12lb for latest success and this is far tougher, so worth opposing in race where he may not enjoy an easy lead. Jewelled Dagger (11/1) is a front runner who keeps improving and handles fast and easy going. Finishing clear of remainder when second over 1m at Ripon eight days ago and stays further, but the presence of other front runners could help sap his energies.
3:25 Cleanevent Carlisle Bell Trial Handicap, Class 4, 7f 200y
Apparently well treated under penalty as he’s likely to go up more than 6lb for his 4l win at Pontefract on Friday, but was given tactically astute ride from a handy position and will have had only three days to recover from those reappearance exertions. Has obvious claims on paper, but not sure he’s one to take short price about.
Hula Ballew (11/2) Along with Thirsk and Pontefract, has a decent record here and, having performed creditably despite softish ground both starts this term (most wins on good to firm), looks very likely to be involved off what remains a decent mark.
3:35 Betextra at Totesport 0800 221 221 Beginners’ Chase, Class 4, 2m 5f 110y
Stagecoach Opal (7/4)
Not always looked entirely straightforward and particularly disappointing when fancied for a handicap at Bangor last time, but previous placed efforts read well in this company and probably one to beat if showing his form; drop in trip won’t trouble if rain arrives.
Grecian Groom (5/1)
Can look good on his day but unconvincing last season over hurdles after an early win and reasonable to have expected a lot more from him on recent chasing debut at Fakenham, where he never looked happy; no surprise to see headgear now applied in the hope of sharpening him up.
4:05 [email protected], Fillies’, Class 5, 6f 16y
White oak Lady (8/1)
Won heavy-ground C&D maiden on second start and keen goer went well for a long way when close fifth in 7f Southwell handicap on good ground last time; return to this trip will suit, stable won this last year and is 29% with 3yos here in recent years (2-7); respected.
Rosie Says No (5/1)
Much improved form on handicap debut back from a break when pouncing late to win over 6f at Great Leighs this month; form looks solid with second and fourth winning since; has a little to prove switched back to turf but could improve again; interesting chance.
Looked improved performer this season; backed from 8-1 to 9-2 when close third in bunch finish on 6f AW comeback and finished clear of the rest when just caught in 12-runner C&D handicap last time (good); 2lb higher here but should be thereabouts.
3:10 Leicester Mercury Family Fun Day Fillies Handicap, Class 4, 7f 9y
Farley Star (7/2)
Only seen once last year and obviously had problems but seems to have enjoyed a clear run this spring; not suited by the way the race panned out last time, her second run back from a year off, and a player back against the girls, with any rain likely to work in her favour.
Secret Night (4/1) Rated 9lb lower on turf than the AW; hard to win with for James Toller in recent times but harsh to say she’s that much worse on grass and just the sort to respond positively to a change of scenery.