Pour it on at Chester
Man On The Spot previews all of the action from the Roodee on the second day of Chester's May Meeting.
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A wide-open start to proceedings which features previous course and distance winners Marcret and Tres Coronas. Sennockian Star is another to have won at the track and arrives off the back of victory in the City And Suburban at Epsom. Mark Johnston also runs the potentially well-treated Party Royal while Yeager will strip fitter for his second at Lingfield last month. Anaconda has also been in action on the Polytrack and That's Plenty has made a successful return to Turf having followed up a second at the Curragh with a win at Musselburgh. STRICTLY SILVER is only a pound higher than when winning over this trip at Newmarket in August. He ran a lot better than the final result suggests at Newmarket on Saturday and could be too good here for Kempton third Squire Osbaldeston and the returning Gabrial The Great.
This looks an above-average renewal and Danadana has more to do than when successful 12 months ago, though will strip fitter for his run in the Earl Of Sefton at Newmarket. Noble Mission was given plenty of rope when making all in the Gordon Richard Stakes at Sandown last month but may not be able to dominate here as Ektihaam, who won a Listed race at Ascot around this time last year, also likes to force the pace. TELESCOPE finished nine lengths behind Noble Mission at Sandown but looked in need of the run and performed accordingly. He'll have no excuses today and will have to win this if he's going to justify his trainer's high opinion. Aidan O'Brien runs Afonso De Sousa but nothing he's shown so far suggests he'll be good enough. Edu Querido caught the eye at Meydan earlier this year, however, and Highland Knight is still capable at this level.
More than half of this field have an Epsom Derby entry, though none are prominent in the current ante-post market. Aidan O'Brien is chasing a fifth win in eight years and has two entries this year. Joseph rides Carlo Bugatti, who is tried in blinkers after only managing fourth in a Grade 3 at Navan on his reappearance, but we prefer stablemate ORCHESTRA. Ryan Moore has ridden the last three winners from Ballydoyle and this son of Galileo has a middle-distance pedigree, though he's a big colt so it will be interesting to see how he handles these sharp turns. Stars Over The Sea is useful but Romsdal needs to step up significantly from his maiden win while Seagull Star and Scotland look nothing special, though the latter did finish ahead of stablemate Belfilo at Newbury on his return to action.
CAPTAIN BOB certainly wasn't winning out of turn at Warwick and Charlie Hills has carried on where father Barry left off here. He may just be good enough to follow up though Our Gabrial has claims if transferring his all-weather form to Turf and Erroneous and Brian Noble have plenty of scope. So does Muteela and she showed a fine turn of foot when ridden positively to score at Beverley. She's gone up 9lb but there is more to come from Mark Johnston's filly and she won't surrender her unbeaten record easily but stablemate Almargo has struggled since being switched to Turf.
Tom Dascombe runs three in this maiden. Newcomer Red Icon may need the experience but Macarthurs Park was a beaten favourite when second at Brighton last month. London Life looks the pick, however, as she has a decent draw and was only beaten half-a-length under Kieren Fallon at Newmarket on her second start. Beacon will improve on his debut fourth at Doncaster but BALLYMORE CASTLE gets the vote. He showed plenty of early speed when third at Newbury and should be able to take advantage of a start from stall two. Just Marion and Hell Of A Lord have shown some ability but are vulnerable to less-exposed types.
Lexington Abbey wasn't beaten far on his reappearance but has a wide draw to contend with here. Fiftyshadesofgrey will also do well to figure starting wide on the course and likewise Chorlton Manor, but Quickaswecan should be able to grab a good position and is preferred to Sacha Park. Jazz and THE HOODED CLAW both finished behind Lexington Abbey at Doncaster last month but the latter was noted staying on strongly in the closing stages and could have the race run to suit here. He'll need a bit of luck off the home turn but could come out on top if finding the gaps. Kickboxer could also figure given luck in-running.
Memory Cloth is enjoying a new lease of life and is already on a four-timer this season having won over this trip at Haydock 12 days ago. He's gone up another 4lb, however, and will also have to cope without Megan Carberry's claim here. Spes Nostra is proving a money-spinner and is bidding for a fifth win in six starts, though his last three have been on Polytrack. Course and distance winner Stellar Express was just beaten on his reappearance at Pontefract and has to enter the reckoning but Dundalk second Long Journey Home looks to be facing a stiff task under top weight. DISPOUR battled to victory in a competitive handicap over hurdles at Sandown last month and won on the Flat in France last year. He looks to have been let in lightly and can take this as the consistent Buckstay usually finds at least one too good.