Neil Morrice brings us all of his best bets and tips for Friday’s racing coming your way from Lingfield Park, Chelmsford City, and Newcastle.
Race 3 No9 SUMMERGHAND (Each Way)
Trainer: David O’Meara – Jockey: Adam Kirby
SUMMERGHAND offers up very good each way value in a fiercely competitive conditions race on all-weather championships day. The Lope De Vega gelding needs a no nonsense pace in order to mow down his rivals at the business end, and that didn’t materialise when he finished fourth in the Cambridge Trophy on turf last week. There’s likely to be no hanging about this time, and given the luxury of racing real estate in the straight he can swoop to conquer.
Race 4 No5 MIGHTY GURKHA
Trainer: Archie Watson – Jockey: Hollie Doyle
The giant MIGHTY GURKHA could be hard to peg back if getting onto a soft lead in this three-year-old only sprint. A Group 3 winner at Kempton last autumn, he bounced back from an abortive visit to the Breeders’ Cup to take out a Class 2 handicap at Kempton in January. He’s formed a good partnership with his jockey, who rides this track as well as anyone.
Race 5 No4 FOREST OF DEAN (Nap)
Trainer: John Gosden – Jockey: James Doyle
This middle distance championship race can see FOREST OF DEAN settling a score with old adversary Bangkok. The selection was unable to get to the latter in the Winter Derby trial in early February, but his form with Felix gives him a strong chance of turning the tables. He was only beaten threequarters of a length by Felix in the Winter Derby itself, while Bankok put in an underwhelming effort in the Saudi Cup, and needs to bounce back from that long journey overseas.
Race 6 No9 INIGO JONES
Trainer: Sir Michael Stoute – Jockey: Richard Kingscote
With much the better draw and greater experience to bring to the table, INIGO JONES can take out this maiden. The son of New Approach earned in both career starts on sand last year and has done well through the winter. He breaks from the rail, which is probably a better place to be than market rival Highland Rocker who is parked out wide.
Race 7 No7 SPIRITUOSO
Trainer: George Margarson – Jockey: Tom Queally
SPIRITUOSO should enjoy stretching out to a mile and a quarter following a career best effort to chase home Bonnie Lad over a mile here. The cheek pieces that brought about improvement that day are retained.
Race 8 No1 GALAHAD THREEPWOOD (Nap)
Trainer: Mick Channon – Jockey: George Bass
This stayers’ handicap can go to the progressive GALAHAD THREEPWOOD, who has done us a couple of good turns already this year. The Nathaniel gelding had his winning sequence halted at Wolverhampton but that was in a Class 2, and he’s now back at Class 4 level.
Race 2 No1 DULAS
Trainer: Charles Hills – Jockey: Paul Hanagan
In an interrupted campaign last year DULAS never got the chance to build on the promise he displayed as a two-year-old. His trainer’s patience could well be rewarded now that he’s strengthened up into what hopefully is the finished article.
Race 5 No3 GLEN AGAIN (Nap)
Trainer: Mark Johnston – Jockey: PJ McDonald
Gleneagles colt GLEN AGAIN can confirm his recent superiority over Defined even though the latter enjoys a swing in the weights. The selection should enjoy this step up to a mile and a half just as much as his market rival, and make it back-to-back successes for his in form stable.