Violin to make sweet music
Easy winner Violin Davis was one of Ashley Iveson's best bets on Monday's card at Plumpton.
- Related Content
KEMPTON: 2.20 Tidy Affair, 2.50 Bridge That Gap, 3.20 Dressed In Lace, 3.50 Officer In Command, 4.20 GUEST OF HONOUR (NAP), 4.50 Line Of Reason, 5.20 Greek Islands.
PLUMPTON: 2.10 Leviathan, 2.40 Violin Davis, 3.10 Star Of Massini, 3.40 Miss Fleur, 4.10 Red Anchor, 4.40 Romney Marsh, 5.10 Sonoftheking.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 2.30 Holy Angel, 3.00 Flashlight, 3.30 Blazing Desert, 4.00 Silver Alliance, 4.30 Ambleside, 5.00 Mumeyez, 5.30 Rockgoat.
DOUBLE: Guest Of Honour and Violin Davis.
Violin Davis is taken to strike a winning note on a decent card at Plumpton.
The EBF/TBA Mares' Novices' Chase is one of the more interesting events at the East Sussex circuit, with Harry Fry's mare likely to be a warm order as she aims to complete the hat-trick.
A good hurdler for Paul Nicholls last season, the seven-year-old was a little disappointing on her fencing bow at Exeter on New Year's Day, but the experience was clearly not lost on her.
She hosed up at Newbury a little over a fortnight later, with her jumping particularly impressive, and toughed it out in atrocious conditions to follow up at Bangor last time.
Violin Davis should be able to give weight and a beating to these rivals easily enough before going on for a crack at the mares' final at Newbury at the end of March.
An interesting bumper brings the Plumpton card to a close and any market confidence behind the Philip Hobbs-trained Sonoftheking would be significant.
The son of leading sire King's Theatre was a good second in an Irish point-to-point last spring behind Mullaghanoe River, a horse who has since won a bumper and a hurdle race for Noel Meade.
Sonoftheking has not been seen since that point-to-point run, but merits the utmost respect all the same.
Marco Botti's Guest Of Honour is fancied to continue his rapid progress and defy top weight in the BetVictor Non-Runner Free Bet At Cheltenham Handicap at Kempton.
Unraced at two, the son of Cape Cross did not make his three-year-old debut until running over this course and distance last September, where his highly promising staying-on fourth was a sign of things to come.
His turf introduction at Pontefract a couple of weeks later was slightly less inspiring, but he has looked far more happy back on an artificial surface the last twice, shedding his maiden tag at Wolverhampton before winning ver cosily on his handicap debut here in late December.
The form of that last run looks sound, with the third home winning since, and a 6lb rise for Guest Of Honour could just prove a little lenient.
The fact he has been given an early entry in the Lincoln at Doncaster suggests Botti believes there is plenty more to come from his lightly-raced four-year-old.
There was a lot to like about Line Of Reason's winning debut at Wolverhampton in September and he is a confident selection in the BetVictor Exclusive Antepost Offer Cheltenham 2013 Handicap.
Out of a mare that has produced several winners, David Simcock's three-year-old showed a thoroughly professional attitude to get the job done at the first time of asking in a race which has thrown up a clutch of subsequent scorers.
He starts life in handicap company off what appears a perfectly satisfactory rating of 75 and should be very hard to beat.
Mark Johnston appears to have found the consistent but frustrating Flashlight the perfect opportunity to finally get off the mark at Wolverhampton.
A fine third on his racecourse bow at Beverley in September, the three-year-old went on to fill the runner-up spot on his next three starts.
He failed to get home a couple of times of seven furlongs, but was then readily outpaced by Godolphin's Mar Mar over six at Doncaster last time.
In fairness, the form is not all that bad with the winner running well in Listed company in Dubai this year.
Flashlight's latest six-furlong assignment looks far less exacting and if he runs up to his official mark of 80 after a break that should be more than enough for him to get his head in front in the Find The Best Odds At bookmakers.co.uk Maiden Stakes.