SPIRIT OF WEDZA (Wolverhampton, nap, 7.10) won one of the divisions of this contest last year and is back again after needing the run last time.
The six-year-old is not a prolific scorer but did make the winner’s enclosure twice in 2017, including when taking the second leg of this sprint in a time over one second faster than the first. The performance can also be upgraded as he achieved the success from a wide draw, hitting the front with a flying start, losing the lead briefly four out before rallying and powering home.
Spirit Of Wedza managed another victory at Hamilton two runs later but his form then tailed off and he was rested until reappearing 20 days later at Newcastle with a mid-field finish beaten three lengths. He should strip plenty fitter for that, will have been aimed at this and looks tremendous value at around 10/1 on Monday evening.
Staying at Dunstall Park, SUNSHINEANDBUBBLES (Wolverhampton, 6.10) and DARK ALLIANCE (Wolverhampton, nb, 8.40) are two more track winners, with the former not beaten far over course and distance 18 days ago. In fine form here and at Southwell with back-to-back wins before and after Christmas, the mare then threw in a stinker on Fibresand before bouncing back over course and distance. She has the figures in the book to go close.
Dark Alliance has proved a money spinner for Mark Loughnane since leaving Ireland, winning two from five including here over seven furlongs. The gelding was slightly unlucky in running over the same trip 10 days ago and was staying on well at the death. Tonight’s extra yardage should be perfect and he’s fancied to win.
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