Our resident tipster is eyeing up a tasty 36/1 double up at Ayr.
The 6f nursery handicap at Ayr has been split into two divisions and I’m hopeful of landing on the winner of each.
The Martyn Meade-trained GUANABARA BAY can hopefully get the ball rolling in division 1 (due off 1.40pm). He finished a disappointing sixth (of 11) when making his handicap debut at Epsom last time, but it was clear the quirky track was to blame – he’d also finished well beaten there on his debut – and he’s far better judged on his subsequent seconds at Newmarket and Ffos Las.
The first of those is the key piece of form as the winner, Bing Bang Bong, has subsequently finished runner-up in the Group 3 Acomb Stakes at York and is now rated 85. That suggests that the selection is well treated here on a mark of 73 and the fact he is making the journey up from Newmarket is significant as his trainer is 1-1 at the track, with the win coming in this very race 12 months ago.
On to division 2 (2.10pm) and a horse who has been crying out for a step up to 6F in the shape of the David Brown-trained filly SWIRRAL EDGE. Her form figures of ‘5854’ might not scream ‘winner-in-waiting’ but that’s not such a bad thing as she’s yet to show her true hand to the handicapper and is able to run here off a lowly mark of just 64.
A speedily bred sort out of a half-sister to the juvenile Group 2 winner Wunders Dream, I’ll be amazed if she’s not a good deal better than that rating and the fact she went off as short as 9/2 on her Newmarket debut back in April suggests she is held in some regard at home. For the record she finished a far from shabby fifth that day and the horses that finished in front of her have franked the form since.
Wind the clock forward five months and it’s her two two runs in September – following a 123-day absence – that mark her down as a potential nursery winner over this trip. Both were over the minimum of 5f and on each occasion she was noted keeping on well for pressure inside the final furlong without being knocked around. Today’s extra should prove ideal then and I also like the booking of Fergal Lynch, who is having a tremendous season in the north and has a 28% (5-18) strike rate on the stable runners.
I’ll be happy if just one of the above selections wins but it’s hard to resist a small-stakes double on the pair, which pays 36.5/1 with bet365 at their current odds (4/1 and 13/2).