Our day ended in a small profit yesterday when Rapid Applause won at Beverley and La Fille Francaisewas placed at Warwick. Inflexiball should’ve won at Beverley but he was given a less than inspired ride.
4.20 – Punchestown – The West’s Awake. 0.75 pts e/w. Available at 20/1. (1/4 odds first 5)
Another devilishly difficult handicap over fences at Punchestown. Kemboy looks the one to beat and heads a very strong team from the Willie Mullins yard. They have won this race five times in the last decade and it could be difficult to prevent them winning again. However outside of the Mullins/Elliott yards there are still plenty of viable alternatives. Slight preference is for The West’s Awake who makes just his seventh start over fences this afternoon. He was beaten nearly sixteen lengths by Bel Ami De Sivola at Fairyhouse last time out but an eight pound pull in the weights could close the gap and that was his first race off the back of a three month break. He had run well on all three starts prior to that this season and gives the impression he has the ability to get competitive from a mark of 139. He is versatile regarding ground conditions and this is the first time he has been seen beyond 20 furlongs. His easy victory here over that trip in November suggests this slight step up in distance could be the source of further improvement.
4.25 – Doncaster:
Suwaan. 1 pt e/w. Available at 12/1. (Betfair, Paddy Power – 1/4 odds first 4)
Memories Galore. 1 pt e/w. Available at 14/1. (Bet365 – 1/4 odds first 4)
A very competitive five furlong sprint and it normally pays to be drawn nearer one of the rails when the going is testing. The majority of the early pace in this race seems to be drawn toward the low numbers but it’s by no means a certainty that the winner will come from there. Suwaan, drawn stall four, is not the easiest of rides but he at his best on a straight track and he went close off a two pound lower mark over C/D in soft ground last September. He showed he was in good heart when failing by a nose to win on the Tapeta at Newcastle on his return last month. That was his first run since wind surgery and a subsequent effort round the bends at Lingfield can be ignored. Memories Galore goes very well in testing ground and he went close in a much better race at Catterick from just a one pound lower mark last October. He has been running well on the A/W and he is taken to bounce back from a disappointment when facing a difficult task in heavy ground at Musselburgh last time out.
5.20 – Chepstow – Don’t Be Robin. 0.75 pts e/w. Available at 25/1. (Betfred, totesport.com – 1/5 odds first 5)
6.25 – Chepstow:
At First Light. 1.25 pts e/w. Available at 11/1.
De Bene Esse. 1 pt e/w. Available at 14/1.