FIVE runners go to post for the King Richard III Stakes at Leicester, a Listed contest over seven furlongs, and POGO (2.10) can take some catching.
He powered home from the front in a Listed event at Windsor last June, scoring by more than five lengths. Mummys Tipple, fighting fit from the all-weather, found Khuzaam too hot to handle at Lingfield but had previously won well at Wolverhampton. A bigger threat is posed by Lord Campari but his ability to stretch out fully on quick ground has to be taken on trust.
At Haydock, FINEST SOUND (4.35) can justify favouritism in the mile handicap. He posted a career-best when second in last summer’s 22-runner Britannia Stakes at Royal Ascot and was pipped by Astro King on his return to action at Nottingham 17 days ago. Third home Nugget landed the Newbury Spring Cup last Saturday and William Buick is a good booking.
WAIT FOREVER (5.55) is well-named as he remains a maiden after 12 starts in the UK. Marco Botti’s six-year-old arrived from Italy with an inflated mark but is gradually sliding down the ratings. His best chance to date arrives in the 1m 2f handicap at Doncaster and Wait Forever will strip sharper for his staying-on sixth to Throne Hall over course and distance at the Lincoln fixture. Cheek-pieces are on today.
Victory would be a feather in the cap of trainer Christian Williams and Kitty’s Light battled hard for a narrow success at Kelso last month under today’s 3lb conditional rider Jack Tudor. Perhaps more significantly, Kitty’s Light has won three times on good ground, so underfoot conditions should be perfect, with the emphasis on speed.
The 3m 5f chase, first run in 1957 under the Whitbread Gold Cup banner, has thrown up some stirring finishes and this year’s renewal should prove no exception.
Plan Of Attack bids to give Rachael Blackmore another big day to remember. She made joyous Cheltenham festival and Grand National headlines, along with astute trainer Henry de Bromhead, and they join forces with the eight-year-old, still bang in contention when falling three out in the Kim Muir Challenge Cup at Cheltenham. Stung bookmakers are taking few chances and Plan Of Attack makes limited appeal at odds of around 9-2 favourite.
Two celebrating champions – Paul Nicholls and Harry Skelton – join forces with Enrilo, off 62 days since edging out Hold The Note at Newbury.
ON TO VICTORY (1.55), winner of the November Handicap on the final day of the Flat turf season at Doncaster, can repeat the dose by capturing the bet365 Novices’ Championship Final Handicap Hurdle on the final day of the National Hunt season. Alan King’s gelding has enjoyed a nice 42-day break since scoring at Warwick. Further down the weights, Gylo can go well in a first-time tongue-tie. William Hill offer five places for each-way purposes.