From 43 races across six meetings in the UK & Ireland on Thursday, it’s a Marco Botti-trained two-year-old that’s selected as my NAP of the Day. Here’s why…

NAP of the Day

  • 15:20 Pontefract – Magico @ 6/4

I’m hoping a step up in trip proves the trick for Marco Botti’s MAGICO, who’s taken to get off the mark at the third attempt at Pontefract on Thursday.

The two-year-old son of Le Havre made his debut in a warm contest at Haydock back in August, finishing an eye-catching fifth behind some nice types who have since franked the form. He then went to Epsom and placed in a decent Class 2 maiden just over two weeks later.

Both those races were over 7f and on both occasions the selection was doing all his best work at the finish, suggesting he should relish this step up to a mile.

He should also relish what appears to be a significantly easier assignment, with his main rival Empire Of Art carrying a 5lb penalty and frankly modest claims from the other seven.

Botti’s yard are in good nick, operating at a 20% strike rate with four wins from their last 20 runners, and the fantastic Rossa Ryan (19% strike rate) getting the leg up is certainly no negative.

I would be somewhat wary of George Boughey’s Zayina and Sayalittleprayer for David O’Meara, for whom any marked support should be respected, but I must say it will be disappointing if Magico can’t break her duck here.

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