Sprint handicaps can be complex enough, early season ones are overlaid with issues of fitness and ground conditions.
The surface at Doncaster looks testing enough, and it is essential to find a horse who relishes these conditions and who is likely to be at peak fitness, as there will be nowhere to hide in that last furlong.
Trainer Mick Channon usually has his string very fit for the early season and his runner Mobsta looks a big gamble in the making.
Two years ago he kicked off his season winning the high grade Listed race, The Cammidge, run here on Saturday. He was rated 108 when failing to defend that last year, which preceded a year of disappointing efforts culminating in two quiet runs here that has seen his mark plummet to just 88.
That could be a gift if the fire can be rekindled, and first time out on this track on soft ground is the most likely circumstances for a revival.
The booking of Champion Silvestre de Sousa is particularly eye-catching and we’ll be getting on early in expectation of a huge bandwagon.
Recommendation: Mobsta, (1535 Doncaster), 1pt win, 11/1 Paddy Power
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