Almania can belatedly open his account for the season at Ascot on Friday, according to Ashley Iveson - he picks out the best bets in Britain and Ireland.
NAP: Almania (2.35 Ascot)
Next Best: Roulston Scar (4.55 Ascot)
Almania can belatedly open his account for the season in the Londonmetric Noel Murless Stakes at Ascot.
A winner on his second and final juvenile start of last season at Sandown in late August, Sir Michael Stoute's charge was pitched in at the deep end on his reappearance in the Dante at York in May - and came up well short.
The son of Australia has contested four competitive handicaps since - and while he has not managed to get seriously competitive in any of them, he has not disgraced himself either.
Almania was beaten just three lengths into fifth place in the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, since when he has again run well at Ascot, Goodwood and York.
His latest effort when sixth in the Melrose Handicap was perfectly satisfactory, because he did best of those who made their challenge on the far side of the track.
Almania's official rating of 95 puts him right in the mix in Friday's Listed event, and the prospect of soft ground is not a major concern.
Darksideoftarnside is of significant interest in the Canaccord Genuity Gordon Carter Handicap.
Successful in testing conditions at Ayr a little over 12 months ago, the five-year-old has largely struggled since - with a brief spell jumping during the winter swiftly aborted.
However, following a couple of readying runs at Newmarket and Sandown, the Ian Williams-trained stayer showed a willing attitude to get back on the winning trail on his latest appearance at Ffos Las.
A 2lb rise is not insurmountable, given he is still a pound lower than when winning at Ayr. Any rain that falls will aid his cause.
Kevin Ryan and Megan Nicholls can combine to land the Original Harrogate Water Handicap with Roulston Scar.
Three wins from five starts this season have seen the three-year-old's rating rise from 77 to 98, but there was enough authority about his latest triumph at York to suggest the handicapper may not have caught up with him just yet.
Sputnik Planum can give weight and a beating to his rivals in the Susan Box Memorial Handicap at Southwell.
Formerly trained by David Lanigan, the five-year-old has proved another shrewd purchase by successful syndicate The Horse Watchers - winning his first couple of starts for his new owners and Mick Appleby last year.
He has not managed to add to his tally so far this season, but has run a few good races in defeat - most recently filling the runner-up spot at Newbury.
Sputnik Planum has a little less on his plate on his return to the all-weather, and should make the most of the opportunity.
Tommy Rapper recommences his career over fences in the NetBet Sport Beginners' Chase at Fontwell.
His first two chase starts were fairly ordinary, in truth, so Dan Skelton elected to send him back over hurdles in the new year.
He signed off his campaign with a fine effort to finish second to the high-class Aux Ptits Soins at Aintree's Grand National meeting and is given another chance to prove his worth over the larger obstacles on his reappearance.
Sporting Life tips
ASCOT: 2.00 Herculean, 2.35 ALMANIA (NAP), 3.10 Raydiance, 3.45 Darksideoftarnside, 4.20 Two Bids, 4.55 Roulston Scar.
DUNDALK: 5.10 True Motion, 5.45 Marmolata, 6.15 Believe In Beauty, 6.45 Punita Arora, 7.15 Outside Inside, 7.45 Heir Of Excitement, 8.15 Cautious Approach, 8.45 Construct.
FONTWELL: 2.25 Kings Temptation, 3.00 Prefontaine, 3.35 Tommy Rapper, 4.10 Capone, 4.45 Mellow Ben, 5.15 Tea Time Fred.
GOWRAN PARK: 2.05 Mezyan, 2.40 Golazo, 3.15 Joy's Gift, 3.50 Surin, 4.25 Unexpected Depth, 5.00 Our Jerry, 5.30 Ard Abhainn.
HEXHAM: 2.15 Mega Double, 2.50 Echiquier, 3.25 Senor Lombardy, 4.00 Melody Of Scotland, 4.35 Ripstick, 5.05 Go To Court.
SOUTHWELL: 5.25 Senorita Grande, 6.00 Jump The Gun, 6.30 Najm, 7.00 Sputnik Planum, 7.30 Para Queen, 8.00 Expensive Dirham, 8.30 Makambe.
DOUBLE: Almania and Roulston Scar.