A quiet day’s racing, but the King Richard III handicap at Pontefract (1540 BST), should be the ideal place for someone looking for a horse.
The start of this sprint handicap should be like opening the doors on the Harrod’s sale, as there are number of confirmed front-runners who are likely to make this a very strongly run race.
The Pontefract course has a stiff uphill finish, and it will be a challenge for whichever horse wins the pace battle to see it through to the line. As such, this may well set up nicely for a finisher from off the pace.
Step forward Russian Realm from the in-form Paul Midgley yard. This horse has plenty of form at 7f, so a fast run race on a stiff 6f should suit. He was a fast finishing 2nd at this trip at Chester, before somewhat disappointing, albeit in a good race at the Curragh on a trip to Ireland.
Jockey Robert Winston is a quality rider with loads of track experience and this race looks sure to be run to suit. He has an excellent chance.
Favourite Bamber Bridge is having only his fourth run, and his first this season. The promise of the unknown quantity probably has him at the head of the market, but this looks a tricky test in which to start a 3yo campaign, and we are happy to oppose.
Let’s hope the Russian can help our campaign – albeit we at Lap Of The Oddski categorically deny any links to the Kremlin.
Recommendation: Russian Realm (1540 Pontefract), 1pt win, 9/1 generally available
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