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Wednesday 7 July 2010

Class 3 Handicap at Newmarket

Im sure Crimea is a poor fav for this handicap, he only won a 5 runner claimer at Hamilton last time and the 2nd and 3rd were both worse off than in a handicap, okay he won by 7 lengths but he was entitled to do so in the context of that race. This more competitive handicap will surely find him out and those that look like fighting it out are, Sohraab, Lenny Bee, Five Star Junior, Invincible Lad and the old stager Indian Trail. The latter is by no means a has been, he didnt run very well last time granted but prior to that he had only been beaten 3 3/4 lengths to Bertoliver in the Dash at Epsom and he will have the strength of Franny Norton to drive him up the hill here and it wouldnt suprise me if he was finishing better than anything. It obviously isnt lost on Nicholls that one of his better performances last year was at Glorious Goodwood when he came 4th behind Blue Jack with Norton up, in that race Invincible Lad was half a length in front of him but there is a 7lb turnaround in the weights now, albeit Ryan Moore is on Invincible Lad. Sohraab is 4lb below his last winning mark which came at Chester when he was drawn 4th of 12 last season, he was then placed in a couple of Listed races so is capable of running well on his day and Hughie Morrison said in a recent stable tour that he thought he was becoming well handicapped. Lenny Bee won smartly first time out this season at Beverley and that race was well advertised by several winners coming out of it, since then he has run twice and on both occasions his trainer hasnt thought he was well drawn, I dont think he will have any excuses on that score tomorrow as it shouldnt make much difference were he's drawn in this field. He is capable of further improvement and he should be thereabouts. Five Star Junior has the assistance of Fallon but although this is a stiff final furlong he would probably prefer 6f, he only just got up at Ayr over 5f, but on the positive side it was a decent race and it was a fast time. Invincible Lad as we have said has Ryan Moore up and this will be for the second time, he finished 3rd at Sandown last summer on him when just behind Blue Jack again, however he is 8lb higher than his last win on turf.
Its not easy stuff picking a winner and at the prices on offer I would be inclined to do Indian Trail ew and oppose Crimea, but if I was pushed to go for a winner I would go for Sohraab and bank on him coming back to form here.