Sunday, 5 May 2013

Hamilton - 2013 Seasonal Opener

HAMILTON – Sunday May 5th
Going – Soft

1.40 6f totepool Handicap (Division 1) (Class 5)

NASHARRA travelled well to two out and stayed on under driving, having the race under control in the closing stages. His four wins have come at tracks with stiff finishes.
MANDALAY KING generally goes well early season and kept on for second after his challenge was rebuffed. Back in third was PELMANISM who has dropped down the weights to his lowest mark for a couple of seasons.

2.15 6f totepool Handicap (Division 2) (Class 5)

A more competitive looking contest than the first heat.
ECONOMIC CRISIS has done a fair bit of racing for a four-year-old, most of her recent runs being in similar class to this. However, her record here now reads 421131, with the three wins being in soft or heavy ground. Given that she won this comfortably then she must be of interest if pulled out here again on Friday, particularly if the rain falls again.
GREENHEAD HIGH ran creditably in second, leading until headed over a furlong out and holding the rest with a bit to spare. Kept on the go over the winter he has been performing consistently.
CELESTIAL DAWN was well outpaced early on but stayed up the hill to take third on the line. She has run well over course and distance in the past.
NANT SAESON was just tapped for speed in the final two furlongs and has done most of his racing and winning over 7 furlongs and a mile.

2.45 6f Cancer Research UK Claiming Stakes (Class 6)

A weak contest.

Not much to choose between the main protagonists. PARADISE SPECTRE looked the likely winner when going on over a furlong out, but TAKEALOOKATMENOW hauled him back to sneak it on the line.
The pair were well clear of SPREAD BOY, who isn’t very good, and PITT RIVERS who needed the race on first run for Linda Perratt after a long lay-off.

3.25 5f totepool Tangerine Trees 3yo Conditions Stakes (Class 3)

A race named after the Prix De L’Abbaye winner who ran up a number of wins here early in his career and proved he holds his ability when a decent third in the Palace House Stakes on Saturday.

POLSKI MAX looked well enough grown as a two-year-old, but early 2013 results suggest the winter has done him some good.  He came with a run approaching the final furlong and was on top in the last 100 yards. He was whacked up to 97 in the handicap weights after winning at Pontefract, so Richard Fahey would have welcomed this opportunity. He stays six furlongs and has shown his best with cut in the ground. The second showed up well in Listed class last time so the form should carry to that level.
LUCKY BEGGAR has been highly tried but found one too good dropped down in class having been third in the Free Handicap at Newmarket. He ran with credit in Listed company as a two-year-old and has clearly trained on, keeping on well to the post.
SMOOTHTALKINRASCAL made good progress from halfway and looked to going best approaching the final furlong. He didn’t find quite as much as might have seemed, but on bare figures this was a creditable effort at least up to previous best,
LADY IBROX put in sound work to the line, running particularly well at these weights. She’s not entered at Chester this week but keep in mind for future reference that he record at that very tight track is 211.

4.00 1m 5f Buttonhook Handicap (Class 3)

A well contested event with no shortage of early pace. Three pulled clear in the final three furlongs, with O MA LAD stayed on determinedly to hold two challenges. He’s clearly well forward and pushed on to follow up a Catterick win.
THE TIGER made an effort over two furlongs away and chipped at the winner to the line without ever quite looking like getting there. He won twice last autumn and is favoured by cut in the ground, though has run creditably on Polytrack.
MICA MIKA battled on having looked held when passed two out.
BOLIVIA wasn’t totally disgraced in fourth as she set sail for home early in the straight off the strong pace. She kept on well enough to hold the pack. She’s not been heavily raced for a seven-year-old and Lucy Wadham may be able to find a race for her.

4.35 1m Casino Royal Night Maiden Stakes (Class 5)

MAPUTO showed promise on his only effort as a two-year-old last May. He set the pace here and kept finding extra up the straight to win with a bit in hand.
PACIFIC HEIGHTS kept on if making no impression from two out. He should find in handicaps and there may be a maiden contest for him.
The favourite was FRASERS HILL who travelled well until two furlongs out but faded very tamely.  He’s a four-year-old who has only raced twice and I wonder if he has a physical problem.

5.10 1m FX Signs Handicap (Class 5)

CORAL SANDS caused a surprise at 25/1, his previous form being much of a muchness. This was a stop-start race from which it’s difficult to draw too many firm conclusions. He stuck on well enough and the track seems to suit given that he previous best had been over course and distance.
PRAVDA STREET went on two furlongs out but was run out of it in the final 100 yards, though rallied sufficiently to hold second place. All bar one of his wins have come at 7 furlongs.
EUTROPIUS, stablemate of the winner, made an effort from two out but couldn’t match the winner in the last half furlong. This was only his fourth race and he can improve further.
KOO AND THE GANG set the pace but was held once passed two out. He had a purple patch in May/June 2011, but hasn’t won since.

5.45 5f Red Hot Chilli Pipers on Braveheart Handicap (Class 6)

A throw ‘em in the air and see what comes down first sprint handicap. TWO TURTLE DOVES led in the final furlong to hold CODE SIX. Between them the two have had 74 runs and mustered 6 wins; they only win in their turn. HERE NOW AND WHY back in third has a slightly better overall record, but at the age of six his place in the hierarchy has now been established.

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