DALAMOI looked very promising when making a winning debut over fences at Kempton in November and improved in defeat when runner-up at Chepstow on his next start. He fell afterwards and ran poorly for no obvious reason in the Timeform Novices’ Handicap Chase at Cheltenham last time. This test up against just one rival may suit him, though, and he may be worth backing to resume his progress. Quick Draw arrives in pursuit of a hat-trick and seems sure to run his race once more.
FAST BUCK had fallen a long way in the weights and won his first race for this yard and over fences at Lingfield just before Christmas, returning to form out of the blue but in full control also. He was unable to follow up following an 8 lb rise at Sandown last time, but fully confirmed he is back on his game, beaten only by a classy operator. Fast Buck is another 4 lb higher now but looks the one to beat and it’s easy enough to envisage this uncomplicated ride making all here. With Tap Tap Boom too high in the weights, Mortlach is the obvious threat.
The market could prove revealing but the vote goes to Chris Gordon’s fair bumper winner DIAMOND EGG, who was well enough fancied in the betting when making his hurdling debut but didn’t manage to get further than the first flight, and is taken to bounce back in style now for a yard that remain in good form. Nicky Henderson’s Boom Boom can have a big say if a recent wind operation gets him back on track, while hurdling-newcomer Aristobulus merits plenty of respect too given his fair winning form on the Flat.
TINTINTIN did very little wrong when runner-up to a subsequent winner under a penalty at Huntingdon in December and that form sets the standard here. There should be even more to come from him and he is preferred to Cloud Dancer, who was evidently showing plenty at home given he was gambled on pitched into a listed bumper on debut and he could be a different proposition this time. Jina is also considered despite a disappointing first effort.
FLYING NUN possibly had her stamina stretched on deep ground over a slightly longer trip than this last time, but she has a good record on a sound surface, and might be worth siding with as she can be made to look well treated on last season’s form. The unexposed Copperfasten is interesting now stepping up in trip after a wind operation and is one to watch in the market, while Chloe’s Court showed she can be very competitive from this sort of mark last time.
TRAPISTA shaped with plenty of promise without being knocked about on her chasing debut and, while she hasn’t progressed as expected since, this is a weak race, so she should take the beating on what she has achieved so far. Monsieur Lecoq could prove a danger if able to bounce back from some poor showings and similar comments apply to Family Business.
IOLAOS DU MOU made a winning start despite showing clear signs of greenness at this track on debut, leading over two furlongs out but having to be kept up to his work when running around in front. He was strong in the betting that day and is open to any amount of improvement now, so he’s taken to follow up despite the presence of his stablemate Meadowsuite, who is well worth monitoring in the betting. Ikalimix is another interesting newcomer.