Our racing expert is eyeing up three fillies as potential bets at Nottingham this afternoon.
There is plenty of solid recent form on offer in the fillies’ handicap over an extended 1m and that ensures we can back David Elsworth’s COSMOPOLITAN QUEEN at a decent price. While she lacks a run this season, she has more than enough going for her to take a chance on her fitness. She failed to win in seven starts at two but still ran some good races in defeat, including a close up fifth in a hot Goodwood nursery (soft) and a second in a novice run over this track and trip last August behind Perfect Clarity, who has an Oaks entry. She’s nowhere near that sort of class but this class 5 contest should be well within her compass and she’s now running off her lowest handicap mark to date.
With her stable hitting top form at the weekend (winner and a second) and boasting an excellent record at this track – an 18% strike rate with all runners yielding a whopping £105.88 to £1 level stakes – I simply can’t let her go unbacked.
Peter Hiatt’s RED TEA was an unlucky short head loser at the Craven meeting 14 days ago and compensation awaits in the class 3 fillies’ handicap card over the extended 1m. Belying her 25/1 price tag and looking like the run would bring her on, she was ridden to lead one furlong out only to hang right, causing her jockey to drop his whip as he tried to correct her. That was a better race than today’s and while she needs to back that up it’s encouraging that she won on her second start back last season.
The form of her yard is another positive with a stablemate obliging at 25/1 last week and, like the selection, he was ridden by Finley Marsh, whose 5lb claim could prove decisive here.
Andrew Balding’s MAID UP (NON-RUNNER) looks the one to be on in the 1m2f handicap for fillies. While she was a distant third at the Craven meeting, nine lengths adrift of the winner Sheikha Reika, she still caught the eye in staying on nicely from off the pace and has clearly done well from two to three. That run was over 7f so the step up in trip is what she needs and her pedigree backs that up too as she is a half sister to 1m2f winner King Of Dreams.
She’s not the only unexposed filly in the field of course, but she is potentially the best handicapped of the lot on a mark of 67, which surely underestimates her true ability.
All odds were correct at time of posting.