2.25 Haydock: Group 3 Pinnacle Stakes, 1m 4f
Odds-on favourite True Self is the right lady on top of the market but at the same time the confidence in her making the step up to group class overvalues what she has done so far. Her career best topspeed rating of 91 gives her a good chance, no doubt. But she is vulnerable to more talented individual.
There is only one other individual in this race likely to be more talented: Pilaster. A frustrating sort, on official ratings she has 6lb to find with True Self. However, she ran to topspeed ratings of 104 and 91 last season and is already a Group 2 winner.
The drop in trip with the slower ground in combination can suit. Her sire Nathanial has an excellent record with his offspring on soft ground. Whether she handles the heavy ground, though, remains to be seen.
I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt to find back to form here today in what looks a winnable race as long as she acts on the ground.
10pts win – Pilaster @ 17/2 MB
4.20 Beverley: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 2f
Judged on this years form he’s going to struggle, however the drop in grade coupled with a good draw and ground to suit may see Indomeneo find back to form.
The 4-year-old has been busy this year already and showed a bit of spark on his seasonal return, though didn’t follow-up. As a consequence he has dropped to a career lowest handicap mark, while also dropping into a class 5 handicap.
That should help Indomeneo to run better than he brought to the track in his recent starts. Taking last year into account, he certainly looks to have a major chance, as he won off 82 over 10 furlongs and was an excellent runner-up over this trip in October when also ran to a joint career highest top speed rating.
Given Indomeneo has ran multiple times to top speed ratings of 77 and higher, he is an obvious danger if he’s still got some appetite for the game. Drawn in 3 should be a big advantage to be in the right position right from the start here.
10pts win – Indomeneo @ 13/1 MB
8.30 Chepstow: Class 5 Handicap, 5f
The soft conditions will suit Union Rose perfectly and can ensure he’ll pull out a bit more than when seen finishing in the money three of the last four times of a similar mark.
The seven-year-old has a 100% place record at this course as well as distance, although is quite a few pounds above his last wining mark; but he’s won of much higher in the past and interestingly his highest rated performances came on genuinely soft ground – Union Rose didn’t have many chances to run in these type of conditions for quite some time now.
Given he acted well at Chepstow before, now with ideal conditions, he can find the needed improvement in order to get his head in front.
10pts win – Union Rose @ 13/2 MB
9.00 Chepstow: Class 6 Handicap, 5f
It remains to be seen how much ability and speed is there over the minimum distance, however on slow ground, I feel Sovereign State could take advantage of a slipping mark and break his maiden tag.
He showed a bit of promise in a couple of starts, without ever getting close. This is a big lad, he may needed time, and looks likely to improve with age.
His best performance came over 5f on soft ground, though, which makes him an interesting candidate in a really poor race, where it wouldn’t surprise to see this low mileage lad improve enough to be competitive.
10pts win – Sovereign State @ 8/1 WH