We’ve a packed racing schedule on Thursday, with seven meetings down for decision across Britain and Ireland.
Hamilton is the starting point, and the Scottish venue is joined by Flat cards from Chepstow, Leicester, Leopardstown and Epsom – while Jumps fare comes from Killarney and Worcester.
Amongst our fancies on Thursday is an unbeaten Joseph O’Brien colt bound for the feature Meld Stakes at Leopardstown.
4.15 Leicester – Miss Lightfandango
It may be worth giving a chance to Charlie Hills’ filly Miss Lightfandango as she makes her handicap bow in this Betfred Super Extra Place Race (four places) at Leicester.
The daughter of Dark Angel made little impact last season in two starts at Newbury and Newmarket in the autumn. However, she brought a bit more to the table last month on her seasonal bow back at Headquarters, battling on well late in the race to finish fifth of ten in a Class 4 novice heat that was won by a Richard Hannon-trained newcomer from a Roger Varian-trained runner-up that had some decent form in the book.
Despite racing quite keenly at times on that first start in 244 days, Miss Lightfandango battled on after getting outpaced by the principles, very much leaving the impression that she will be suited as her stamina is further teased out.
She gets that extra two furlongs now and an opening mark of 64 in Class 5 company certainly allows her some scope to make her mark. She’s on the Most Napped table via the Betfred Betfinder for Thursday’s racing and the odds are more generous than anticipated with those four places to aim at.
4.25 Hamilton – Bryce
Scottish action this afternoon is from Hamilton Park and the Racing TV Profits Returned To Racing Handicap over six furlongs offers Bryce his latest chance to shed the maiden tag.
Nigel Tinkler’s Galileo Gold gelding is 0-11 but has been knocking on the door of late. Good runs at Redcar and Doncaster in June were followed last week by a near miss at Ripon (6f, good) where first-time cheekpieces appeared to have a positive effect.
Faye McManoman’s partner really gave the favourite Glendown cause for worry inside the final furlong, the front pair forging clear, and a neck separated them passing the post.
Bryce is due to go up 2lb in the ratings for that effort after this contest and he may have shed his maiden tag before it kicks in. This Betfred Extra Place Race sees three each-way places rewarded in a field of seven.
7.25 Leopardstown – Trustyourinstinct
The feature event on the evening card at Leopardstown is the Group 3 Meld Stakes and it’s a target Joseph O’Brien has picked out for his unbeaten Trustyourinstinct.
The JP McManus-owned Churchill colt has won both starts so far in commanding fashion at the Curragh (1m2f, good) and Gowran Park (1m1½f, yielding) in May/June. He had two next-time-out winners behind in that debut success and beat some solid yardsticks last time with plenty to spare in a Conditions event.
Declan McDonogh rides once more this evening and his partner looks worthy of this step up in class, while a slight drop in trip isn’t expected to cause him undue concern.
There’s surely plenty more improvement to come and he can underline that by accounting for the likes of Alfred Munnings and Self Belief on his way to Meld Stakes glory.