Our racing expert is hoping to boost the Royal Ascot betting bank with a couple of Windsor runners.
Richard Hughes has made a solid start to his first full season as a trainer and his BUNBURY can be another winner for him in the 1m handicap at Windsor this evening (due off 7.50pm).
The three-time champion jockey has 14 winners on the board already in 2016, with eight of his 51 (16%) turf runners obliging, and he’s done particularly well with his handicap debutants. Hughes has saddled three winners from ten runners in their first handicap this season and a £1 bet on all of those would have yielded a whopping profit of £19.
In the selection he looks to have another well-handicapped runner to go to war with as the four-year-old has shown more than a glimmer of promise in three starts in maiden company to qualify for a mark. Disappointing on his debut at Kempton back in February, he has since caught the eye twice in races at this track, finishing strongly into fourth and fifth (last time) despite finding trouble in running on both occasions.
Certainly, an opening perch of 74 could underestimate this Dansilli brother to Group 2 winner Zacinto and he looks just the type to improve now taking on older and more exposed handicap rivals, the best of whom may be The Salmon Man. He took a while to get going when fancied for a 7f Leicester handicap last time and looks sure to benefit from the return to a mile, though he’s been raised 5lb since.
Connections of RAIL DANCER were clearly expecting a big run when the gelding was declared for a Hamilton handicap at the end of May as he was heavily backed on the morning of the race, only for him to be withdrawn in the afternoon. That he was backed was a surprise as he had shown next to nothing in four British starts previously and it will be interesting to see the level of support he attracts for Windsor’s opening 1m3f apprentice handicap (due off 5.50pm).
He’s a 14/1 shot at the time of writing and is worth a small interest at that price. While he has four duck eggs to his name, he has been going off at huge odds in races over a mile and the son of Arc winner Rail Link could step up considerably now he steps up to this sort of trip. A collapsed handicap mark – down to 60 from an opening 82 – is another reason to expect a return to the winning form he showed when trained in Italy, with the stable form – a 20/1 winner and a 7/1 second from just five runners in the last fortnight – providing further encouragement.