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Sunday 28 September 2014

Cracking handicap chase at Market Rasen yesterday

The late September meeting staged by Market Rasen is always a welcome curtain opener to the season to come. The feature race of the meeting was the handicap chase at 2:50pm over an extended 2m6f.

I thought the morning race-fav Houston Dynimo looked vulnerable off OR128 and, as the race panned-out, he did. He was unable to get on terms with the leading pair and he's going to struggle off this rating.

There were a couple of joint fav's in Ballincurrig and Attaglance.  I thought the trip would test the stamina of Ballinacurrig, and he's not looked the type to win when fresh before. As such, I'm prepared to forgive him this race.  I'm not sure about the 8yo Attaglance who remains a maiden chaser, altho' he could well find 7-10lbs of improvement for the run if he comes out again in the the next 3 or 4 weeks. That said, I reckon he'd be best at a trip shorter than this.

The race winner was MART LANE who is a horse who looks smart on his good days - but they don't seem to come around regularly. He won his seasonal debut in Oct-2013 and then won a cracker of a handicap in December, but then failed to complete 3 of his next 4 races. As such, he came into yesterdays race on OR134 which was only 2lb higher than his rating when winning in December (after which he was rated OR142) so, on the proviso that he returned to form, he looked well-in yesterday - and so it proved.

The runner-up the 6yo Dursey Sound, continues on the upgrade, but perhaps found this trip stretching his stamina, as it was run at a good pace throughout. He may find 2m4f his best trip as a chaser.

The one that I thought looked one for the notebook was already on my alert list - FOX APPEAL. His trainer Emma Lavelle hasn't had a winner since April, and so I thought the horse may need the run. However, with 2 fences to jump he looked the most likely winner he was going so well. Unfortunately, he found nothing when asked for a winning effort, and I can see this horse running 7-10lb better NTO. As such, he's on my radar for the 2m4f Class 2 handicap chase run at Cheltenham at the Showcase meeting on 18th October (won last year by Johns Spirit).

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