AFTER nailing a 4-1 and a 7-2 winner yesterday racing expert, Alan Thomson is back in saddle today looking for a trio of winner at Catterick.
IAIN JARDINE is preparing for the biggest test of his life Down Under as Nakeeta lines up for next week’s Melbourne Cup and the yard could enjoy a timely pick-me-up if JABAAR (1.35) can supplement his recent course success at Catterick.
The decision to step up Jabeer to 12 furlongs for the first time paid handsome dividends as the four-year-old finished strongly to catch Henry Smith. That pair are handicapped to dead-heat but having backed Henry Smith that day I was disappointed with his tame finish (faded into third close home) after hitting the front over a furlong out. Henry Smith could manage only seventh in this race 12 months ago, but is 6lb lower here.
Mixboy was another to cost me money at Ayr last time but there were surely mitigating circumstances as the big grey got bogged down in the gluepot conditions. This shorter trip and less testing ground make Mixboy a dangerous rival. I expect he will be ridden prominently again.
Nurse Nightingale hasn’t been seen on the turf since running sixth in a Salisbury maiden in early summer. She has since switched from Hugo Palmer to Michael Bell and ‘ding-dong’ has been running Nurse Nightingale on the all-weather.
She was only pegged back close home over 1m 4f at Newcastle last time when ridden by today’s 7lb claimer Tristan Price and this daughter of Nathaniel is bred to handle soft ground.
INGLEBY HOLLOW (2.40) isn’t the most consistent but the application of a tongue tie did the trick at Redcar last time.
The gelding has habitually made the running but the change to hold-up tactics at Redcar also sparked an improvement. There will be plenty of pace with bold front-runners Tonto’s Spirit and In Focus lining up, so it will be no surprise to see Danny Tudhope drop out Ingleby Hollow from his wide draw.
It’s an open stamina test and Tonto’s Spirit will have plenty of backers, despite a 9lb rise for his demolition job here only 10 days ago. The softer the better for Ken Slack’s gelding.
Hurricane Hollow is expensive to follow but ran another sound race at Ayr, while Only Orsenfoolsies is capable on his day. Franny Norton is an interesting booking by Micky Hammond for this inconsistent sort.
Top weight Attention Seeker beat Bodacious Name here on soft ground in August but she is 10lb higher here.
Adherence beat Eyreborn at Ayr but strictly on the formbook has little chance with In Focus on their running here three weeks ago. In Focus has a big chance but there is the danger that he will be caught up in a dogfight for the lead with Tonto’s Spirit.
The Tudhope/O’Meara team hold a big chance with SHORT WORK (3.45).
The four-year-old has been in tremendous form, mopping up three races before producing another huge run at York when third to red-hot Shady McCoy. That came over seven furlongs but Short Work has plenty of speed and is a pound lower.
If the ground is riding soft the runners will make a bee-line for the stands’ side hurtling off the home bend and I’m hoping
Tudhope can lead or dispute from stall one, stealing a march on his rivals.