3.15 6f Class 3 Handicap – Royal Residence 15/8
Generally a consistent colt that loves cut in the ground, he won very well on good to soft at Carlisle in August before a big run in the Ayr Bronze Cup Handicap where finishing 2nd in heavy ground without a clear run hinting his very well handicapped, he returned this season still in good form and shaped better than his results, his latest effort was a tad disappointing when just missing out on a win by a neck after awkwardly hanging blowing his chances, but the winner Buridan who is clearly very well handicapped and they was well clear of the rest of the field, his due to go up 3lb for that close 2nd but escapes that here which leaves him looking well in and although slightly up in class, he isn’t facing competition like Buridan here. Trainer James Tate is in great form with 4 winners in the last 2 weeks all with today’s jockey, a great 4 winners from 10 runners teamed up, trainer sends just the one out today and has a good record at the course with a positive career level stake profit which is even better the past 5 seasons, he has a exceptionally partnership with jockey P J McDonald with 19 winners from 54 rides, 35% strike rate with a +£27.75 LSP and P J is in great current confident form himself.
3.35 1m Class 4 Handicap – Leader Writer 11/4
Hasn’t won for 21 months, but with a few big breaks and stints over obstacles, he’s only had 9 runs on the flat mainly in some hot races, he recently switched yards from Henry Spiller to David Elsworth which although David isn’t in the best of forms this season, it’s still a big trainer upswing. The horse has had the one run for his new connections which was very encouraging in the lowest grade his faced to date, he was very well handicapped, being 9lbs under his last winning mark, he started from a bad draw and had to settle for a bad position at the back well off the pace but when into the straight he was very eye catching threading his way through the field with an obstructed run, without a doubt the best horse in the field and would of won easily with a better draw or clear run. Today the straight track will be a big plus, the ground is perfect and Ryan Moore is booked which is significant, they’ve only teamed up 30 times the last 5 years and have 8 winners, a cool 30% strike rate and nice +£10.78, trainer David has just the one ride to concentrate on too which is also significant.
4.10 7f Class 5 Handicap – Stormbomber 10/3
Has a good soft ground pedigree and has shown good promise in his 3 runs, the latest he blew the start but shaped and finished well over a sharp 6f, the handicap mark of 66 is very appealing on breeding and now upped in trip, on his ground he could look stupidly well handicapped against a more exposed field, I would of preferred a higher draw to more confident as most of the pace is higher, but still one watch and keep onside when the ground is testing like today.
Russell Blair Racing