Botti dreaming of California success

  • By: Anita Chambers
  • Last Updated: January 16 2013, 19:19 GMT

Anita Chambers fancies California English to continue his improvement by taking victory at Kempton on Wednesday.

Marco Botti (left): Started 2013 in flying form

KEMPTON: 4.15 Delightful Sleep, 4.45 Hierarch, 5.15 CALIFORNIA ENGLISH (NAP), 5.45 Divine Rule, 6.15 Epic Storm, 6.45 Al Gharrafa, 7.15 Pobs Trophy.

LINGFIELD: 12.30 La Estrella, 1.00 Liliana, 1.30 Blue Deer, 2.05 Mistral Wind, 2.35 Rose Ransom, 3.10 Roy's Legacy, 3.40 Baby Dottie.

NEWBURY: 12.50 Seventh Sign, 1.20 Ohio Gold, 1.55 Imperial Leader, 2.25 Loch Ba, 3.00 Violin Davis, 3.30 Vendredi Trois, 4.00 Chapoturgeon.

DOUBLE: California English and Rose Ransom.

California English endured a disappointing 2012 but this year already looks to be an improvement and he can confirm that impression with victory at Kempton.

Marco Botti's charge won one of his three starts as a juvenile but failed to strike in seven outings last year, getting placed a couple of times without really threatening to win.

However, the application of cheekpieces last time out brought about an upturn in form, with California English finishing a length-and-a-quarter second in a fair handicap event.

The winner that day benefited from an enterprising ride and off a steady pace, California English lacked the necessary change of gear in the finish.

He has won at Kempton in the past and a drop back from an extended mile should benefit him in the Back And Lay At Handicap, a qualifier for the London Mile series.

Botti should be in double form as Al Gharrafa has a shout in the Handicap.

The three-year-old was well beaten on her racecourse bow last month before making it second-time lucky in a Wolverhampton maiden event despite looking a bit green.

While that was an average affair at best, she displayed a good attitude in victory and might be a touch better than the bare form would suggest.

Rose Ransom is an interesting recruit for Mark Johnston and she makes her debut for the yard in the Holtye Handicap at Lingfield.

Four turf starts for Dermot Weld last year yielded little joy, although she shaped with some promise on her first run in nursery company last October.

Fourth that day, she lacked the necessary acceleration when the winner went on a couple of furlongs from home in what were testing autumn conditions.

Subsequently switched to the Johnston camp, connections evidently think she merits a chance on the all weather and her initial mark of 63 puts her 5lb below her Irish rating and in with a chance.

The ever-popular La Estrella turns out again in the Bet On Your Tablet At Claiming Stakes as he makes a rare foray to the Surrey venue.

Don Cantillon's 10-year-old is having to ply his trade away from his beloved Southwell due to the track's temporary closure, but he has proved just as good at Wolverhampton.

Twice a winner there recently, he made hard work of it last time but still managed to get up by a short head at the line.

He has not run at Lingfield since 2008 but it is hard to oppose a horse who has won his last seven starts and has not been beaten in over a year.

Loch Ba has leapt up the weights this term but should still be good enough in the Betfred Goals Galore Handicap Chase (for the Harwell Trophy) at Newbury.

One of the batch of jumpers to join Mick Channon after the retirement of Henrietta Knight, he made an excellent start for his new handler when winning at Kempton in November.

He then narrowly failed to follow up at Ascot last month, going down by half a length to The Rainbow Hunter despite making a mistake five fences from home.

Loch Ba battled all the way to the line that day and while he has been put up a further 3lb for that run, he remains a horse on the upgrade.

Violin Davis is the choice in the European Breeders' Fund/Thoroughbred Breeders' Association Mares' Novices' Chase.

A Grade Two mares' hurdle winner last term, she turned in a fair effort on her chasing bow at Exeter two weeks ago and should improve for the experience.

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