3.25 Thirsk: Class 3 Handicap, 1 mile
A big field that screams competitiveness. However, judged purely by TS ratings, there are very few in it who appear to be well handicapped, actually. Most of these older horses are capable of running to some sort of form close to their current rating – but better than that?
Usually this isn’t my cup of tea, a race like this, neither the horse I fancy – particularly at a price as short as it is. Nonetheless there is still a bit of juice in the price of Richard Fahey’s Borodin, I feel.
For a start: he’s the only 3 year old in the race thanks to WFA racing off bottom weight while his actual rating should see him rather toward the top third of the weights. This is going to be his handicap debut and there is an obvious question mark in first place whether Borodin is as good as a lofty 86 handicap mark.
The answer is emphatically “yes” judged by the form of his last two starts that also came here at Thirsk. He appeared to be still pretty green on both occasions, which makes sense as it was only lifetime start two and three.
He disposed an experienced runner-up over 7f on his second outing easily. This runner-up – Kawasir – was subsequently a good deal beaten but not disgraced when finishing within 6 lengths of an individual that’s now rated 95.
Borodin then stepped up to a mile. Still quite green and keen to get on with things he was swept by late by a promising horse in New Show who ran well in a hot class 2 Handicap subsequently. Also the third, History Writer, 2¼ behind Borodin, won a decent Sandown Handicap on his next start racing off 85.
In summary: judged by this form, an opening mark of 86 doesn’t look harsh. In fact, if Borodin has learned from his three starts he should improve quite a bit and can be a few pounds better than that.
The fact that he has been here at Thirsk before and ran well, also is one who is likely be up with the pace, which is an advantage at this track, means this rather smallish gelding shouldn’t be too intimidated by the big field. That says he’ll need a good break from a less than ideal draw in 10.
10pts win – Borodin @ 11/2 Sky