GRACIOUS JOHN (Newbury, 2.35) won this last year and returns fit and well-handicapped in an attempt at retaining his Dubai Duty Free Handicap crown.
As you would expect from a David Evans-trained horse, the selection was kept very busy following the victory but despite some decent shows in competitive company, failed to add further success. Given a short break early this year, he returned to action with an excellent effort in Listed company at Lingfield and has run well twice since including three weeks ago again at Lingfield.
That will have set him up nicely for today’s task and, with conditions likely to be similar to last year, Gracious John has a big shout off a 7lb lower mark.
Gracious John 2pt win @ 7-2
KALOOR (Newbury, 4.10) made just one appearance as a juvenile but it was impressive at Salisbury over a mile, where he bolted up after powering to the front in the final furlong.
Bought for 110,000gns, the three-year-old is bred for today’s trip and further, and looks the type to excel this season. He is very tempting at a double-figure price.
Kaloor 1pt ew @ 22-1
RISING SUNSHINE (Kempton, 8.15) is not one for the nervous punter with a record of just one victory in 44 starts. However, something has to win this lowly contest and a reproduction of his figure recorded over course and distance prior to a tame effort over a mile at Chelmsford, may see him go close.
At around 12-1, I’m prepared to risk a small each-way investment.
Rising Sunshine 0.5pt ew @ 16-1
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