TINDARI, who is well handicapped on jumps form which includes a victory at the Cheltenham Festival, can take this off bottom weight. Over jumps he would be giving weight to Admiral Byng, who is only a moderate novice in that sphere, but here receives over 2st.
The handicapper may have underestimated NUMBERED ACCOUNT, who is unbeaten in two runs this season. A smooth winner over this track last time, his best performance came at Newmarket where he beat smart sorts in Night Bell and Ataared.
Luca Cumani's maiden winner Tree Of Life could be superior to this field but is hard to assess on her first run this year. Chatham Island would have fine chance but his stable is struggling to find form. IN THE MONEY has been put up 3lb for winning at York three weeks ago but stayed on stoutly then and can hold these rivals.
KNAVE'S ASH made a big impression when winning a competitive race at York last time and is probably still a step ahead of the handicapper.
BARDOLPH made a promising seasonal debut when fifth in the Chester Cup and should be ready to reverse form with the third there, Welshman. Admiral's Well would hold a sound chance on faster ground, but has floundered in mud over hurdles this winter.
NORTHERN BIRD will benefit from the strong pace certain to be set by Rise Up Singing. A close fifth to Philidor in the Golden Mile at Goodwood last July, she has shown little in two races so far this season, but her handicap rating has eased as a result. In contrast, Hi Nod has been put up 6lb for winning a valuable handicap at Thirsk two weeks ago. That was his first run of the season and he may be even sharper today.
SHARAAR won well in the soft on his seasonal debut at Goodwood last week and may produce further improvement here. Fox Sparrow, who is by the sprinter Sharpo, failed to stay 12 furlongs last time out and will be better suited by this trip. The form of his previous third in the Rosebery Handicap has not worked out well, however.
Ian Balding's horses are running into form and BRANDON PRINCE, who has dropped in the weights after three below-par performances this season, may now be ready to display his prowess at this distance. Wings Cove was a short-head behind Moidart when the two were beaten at Sandown last month. This afternoon the latter is 3lb worse off with Lady Herries' runner but looked in need of the race that day and can confirm the form.
Over today's shorter distance and on the prevailing soft ground, CONCORDIAL should return to the form of his Easter Stakes second to the useful Ultimo Imperatore. Bluegrass Prince, third there,looks held.
AIRPORT looked set for a run in the Derby after pulling clear of an above- standard Wood Ditton Stakes field at Newmarket six weeks ago. The bubble was burst, however, when he was touched off by Wishing in a comparatively modest event two weeks later. But John Gosden's colt apparently banged a knee in that muddling contest and today he can put himself in line for a Royal Ascot prize.
LEIGH CROFTER has improved this season but his most recent victory, at Newbury, suggested that the upward curve had not yet levelled out.Reuse content