Our racing guru is turning his attentions to the all-weather in search of a winner.
Wincanton may already have been abandoned by the time you read this and with nothing jumping off the page for this afternoon’s other jumps meeting at Carlisle, it’s the all-weather that provides today’s bets.
The Derek Shaw-trained LOYALTY is keeping his form well at the age of nine and could record another success in the 1m handicap at Chelmsford this evening (due off 6.50pm). A winner at the track on his penultimate start off just a 2lb lower mark, he ran perfectly well at Lingfield 12 days ago under the circumstances. Having dwelt when leaving the gates, he was stuck wide and didn’t get the clearest of runs when making his challenge just over a furlong out, before finishing well to snatch third close home just over a length behind the winner.
In truth, he is far better suited to this more galloping track, where his form figures read 517411, with all three successes coming over today’s trip, and he looks nailed on to run a big race. It’s a competitive heat, mind, and several of his rivals also bring solid recent form to the table, though the forecast favourite Revolutionist has a 117-day absence to overcome. However, the selection is in the form of his life, is well drawn in stall one and has a capable 5lb claimer in Callum Shepherd on his back.
The day’s second bet and indeed nap, the Mark Loughnane-trained COILLTE CAILIN, has also shown a liking for the Chelmsford surface and the six-year-old looks the answer to this evening’s 1m2f handicap (due off 7.50pm). The six-year-old scored over track and trip in January and had no problem following up off his revised mark at Wolverhampton. He was heavily backed to land the hat-trick last time and really should have won but for affording the surprise winner a very soft lead. He ran on well to go second well inside the final furlong but by then the winner had gone and he was unable to bridge the gap.
On that evidence, he still looks ahead of the handicapper and this looks an excellent opportunity for him to make amends under Adam Kirby, who was on board for the January success. His stable is in fine form too with three winners in the last fortnight and his last six stablemates to have run have achieved finishing positions of 161123, so there is plenty of encouragement for a bet.