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Yesterday's first selection was a Non-Runner, which seemed a baffling decision if it was based on the ground. The replacement selection wasn't great, and I expected much better with the record William Haggas has at the track, especially with his 2yo's and the fact the horse had a Group 1 entry, which is something which Haggas doesn't normally do unless he rates them.
Without a doubt LIBERATION POINT is a short enough price, but it wouldn't surprise me to see him go off odds-on. He is a very lightly raced 4yo, who has only been seen on the track the three times, so plenty of improvement is expected to come.
Based on his first run for his new yard, I expect this step up in trip to be what he wants, as he took an eternity to get into top gear, but when he did, he picked up well and won quite snugly in the end. This stiffer track should also be a positive for him as it will put more emphasis on his stamina. The Dam's side of the pedigree is full of horses who stayed further than today's trip, and I'd take a guess that he will be more like his mum's side of the family, than his dad, based on his run at Ripon.
Mick Appleby does well with these kind of horses who come from other stables. Also, the owners are shrewd people in the game and know what they're doing, and there will be a plan in action for this horse. Off a mark of 82, that could be lenient, and even though his form of his recent win isn't good at all, I still believe there is much more to come from this son of Iffraaj, who did well to win after a 300+ day break last time out.
She is still a maiden after four runs, but this looks like an ideal opportunity for BARSHAA to shed her maiden tag.
She has been given a mark of 78 for her four runs to date, which was dropped from 79 after her most recent third placed finish in a maiden race. The two horses who finished in front of her that day look like decent horses, so I wouldn't be too worried about the fact that Barshaa's RPR for the race was perceived to be equivalent to a rating of 77.
She has a lovely pedigree, being by Dubawi and out of a Dual Group 1 winning Mare. Normally with Dubawi's, they will enjoy ground with a little cut, but I don't think today's ground will pose any problems as the Dam was effective on fast ground, and Dubawi's progeny do seem to act on good-to-firm.
Barshaa is one of just a handful of 3yo's in this race, and is definitely the least exposed horse in the lineup. It would be a little disappointing if she wasn't better than her current mark of 77. Simon & Ed Crisford are having a good season so far, and when they send their horses up north, it is always worth a second look. They have only sent 3 runners to this track since they combined up as joint trainers, and that has yielded 1 win.
12:00 Ayr - Race: 1
12:15 Cork - Race: 1
12:35 Ayr - Race: 2