It’s a tricky Thursday, the highlight of which is racing at the beautiful Yorkshire track at Ripon.
This sharp course greatly favours front runners as they can be hard to reel back if they get the pace fractions right.
Jockey Tom Eaves has pulled off the “made all” trick twice now with Gurkha Friend and aims for a hat-trick over the mile (1530 BST). He is only up 3lbs from last time, probably reflecting that he scraped home in a massed finish. Tactically he could grab the lead again, albeit one or two in here may take him on.
The mystery horse of the race is David O’Meara’s Kharbetation. He is a 4 year old, but has only seen the track once – when a sublimely easy winner of a maiden last Summer.
That has earned a possibly lofty rating of 93, but equally that is a guess as he won with tons in hand. He gave a lot of trouble at the stalls that day (although in fairness it was a racecourse debut).
Provided he has matured, this rangy son of soft ground loving Dream Ahead, could be just about anything, and certainly has a edge in potential over an otherwise fairly exposed field of handicappers.
“Could be anything” comes with the serious health warning that this often means “is probably nothing” – but the odds here look attractive given the good form of the stable, and the fairly low bar being set by the opposition.
Stable jockey Danny Tudhope does the steering.
Recommendation: Kharbetation (1530 Ripon) 1pt win, 4/1 generally available
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