Our racing expert is eyeing up a potential winning double at Hamilton.
Mark Johnston can land a double on this afternoon’s card at Hamilton, initiated by DELFT DANCER in the opening novice auction stakes, who is bidding to improve the stable’s excellent record with juveniles at this track (11-38, 29%, +£19.52 to £1 level-stakes).
As the only previous winner in the field, she is giving weight away all round by virtue of her penalty, but her experience will count for plenty and judging by her latest effort at York she is still improving.
Having won on her second start at Nottingham, when building on the promise she had shown on her debut at the same track, she was penalised when upped in class on the Knavesmire and was far from disgraced under the circumstances in finishing fifth, given she dwelt at the start and then ended trying to challenge widest of all.
That run also showed she can handle quicker ground and I fancy she can hold off her main market rival Big Ace, who is dropping back to the minimum after bumping into an above average sort over 6f at Redcar. Richard Fahey’s Robeam is a half-brother to six winners and may do best of the newcomers.
For the second leg of the double, we’re having to wait until the closing 1m1f handicap but Johnston’s IF WE CAN CAN could be worth waiting for as he looks poised to follow up his success over slightly further at Redcar ten days ago under a 6lb penalty. That may seem harsh given his winning margin was just half a length and strictly on these terms he is going to struggle to again beat the re-opposing runner-up Troop, who is challenging for favouritism.
However, he looks typical of the stable’s three-year-olds, who generally improve when asked to race beyond a mile for the first time, and the way he kept finding when challenged, having taken over the lead three furlongs out, suggested he had a little more in the locker if needed.
As a half-brother to six winners and still lightly-raced after just five starts (two since being gelded), I’m very hopeful he can continue his forward momentum over this sort of trip and double his tally.
A £10 double on today’s selections at current Betfair odds (9/4 & 3/1) pays £130 (so 12/1).
All odds were correct at time of posting.