Our resident tipster is flagging up a trio of runners to back this afternon.
There’s Group action at the Curragh where Aidan O’Brien is bidding to win another Beresford Stakes (due off 3.50pm). The Ballydoyle maestro has won of the seven of the last ten renewals, including the last four, and he is triple handed this afternoon.
It’s not always easy to work which is the stable’s main hope when they are more handed, although jockey bookings suggest that Beacon Rock (Ryan Moore) and Unicorn (Joseph O’Brien) are preferred over stablemate Port Douglas, and they are 3/1 and 7/2 respectively with Paddy Power.
However, neither may win as Dermot Weld’s TRUE SOLITAIRE, who had Unicorn back in third when winning impressively at Galway in July and has since run a cracker to finish second in a hot Leopardstown Group 3, with Thursday’s Newmarket winner Sanus Per Aquam back in third. With the O’Brien runners helping to make the market, the son of Oasis Dream is a very backable 15/8 with Hills.
Also worth a punt but this time up at Musselburgh is the Kevin Ryan-trained LAUGHTON, who carries top weight in the 5f nursery (2.30pm). A €150,000 breeze-up purchase, he has shown a fair level of ability in three maidens, including when finishing fourth on his Haydock debut (good to firm), and his last two defeats came on ground that was perhaps softer than ideal.
Today’s conditions should be far more to his liking and he’s certainly with the right trainer to exploit what looks a very generous opening handicap mark of 65. I couldn’t believe Paddy Power were as big as 5/2 (9/4 after I jumped on), when he’s as short as 11/8 with bet365.
A more speculative choice at the Scottish track is the David O’Meara trained TERHAAL, who makes his belated seasonal reappearance in the 7f handicap (3.05pm). A winner on his debut at Haydock last October when last seen out, he’s presumably had his problems since and we are taking a chance on his fitness.
However, he’s clearly talented and is taking on some largely exposed rivals off what looks a fair mark of 81 on his handicap debut. Graham Gibbons, who scored on him last autumn, is back on board and, at 7/1, he’s over twice the price of stablemate Foreign Diplomat, who is running out of excuses.
All odds were correct at time of posting.