2.05 Haydock: Class 2 Handicap, 7 furlongs
I’m very much attracted to the Great Prospector here. A pipe opener in the Lincoln was a better run than the bare form suggests, but certainly dropping down to 7f will suit, and so does the drop in mark.
Down to a 94 rating now, this looks sexy on the basis of his juvenile performances, but even more so on the strong piece of form that is his 3rd place finish in the Guisborough Stakes last October. Also he’s been running to a TS rating of 94 in the past, as well as multiple 100+ RPR’s – he’s a classy individual.
It’s true that the Great Prospector hasn’t quite followed on from a strong 2-year-old campaign, though he’s been racing in hot competition mostly last year, and judged by his performances in autumn, he surely has still the appetite for racing and could be really dangerous today.
He will not mind the rain today and looks one of the more likely, if not even one of the very few in this contest potentially well handicapped.
10pts win – Great Prospector @ 9.5/1 MB
2.40 Haydock: Class 5 handicap, 1 mile
Frankadore is related to a couple of winners that all did well over this trip and usally won as three-year-olds of similar handicap marks. Given he’s a son of Frankel, who has quite an outstanding record with offspring at Haydock, also over a mile, there is good evidence this lad can be a big runner on handicap debut.
As a late April foal you would expect him to come on for the winter break. He started his juvenile campaign late, but showed plenty of promise on debut in a hot contest that worked out well.
In two subsequent starts Frankadore disappointed, but now older, also gelded, I do expect improvement. An opening mark of 73 looks fair, and could potentially underestimate him, if he can find back to the sort of form he produced on debut.
10pts win – Frankadore @ 14/1 MB
7.15 Doncaster: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 4f
Rowland Ward is quite good looking colt, well bred out of an Oaks Trial winner, with the appearance of an individual with scope. He was a disappointing beaten odds-on favourite on his seasonal return at Pontefrace in a 3-runner-race.
But I give the colt the benefit of the doubt: he probably needed the run, didn’t look totally happy at bumpy Pontefract, was beaten by a race fit winner and he also dwelt. Starting issues seem to become a habit and is a concern.
Nonetheless, I feel his opening mark on handicap debut today looks potentially underestimating him, given he also tries the 12f only for the second time, which on pedigree should suit perfectly, and he also drops in class here.
10pts win – Rowland Ward @ 9/2 MB