Tonight's racing: three to keep an eye on at Kempton
After the pageantry of Ladies' Day at Aintree, Kempton takes over in the evening with a seven-race card. Here are three to look out for. . .
There's quite a bit of necessary guesswork in the opener, a handicap for three-year-olds rated up to 55. Most don't have much form to go on, and that includes topweight Gas Monkey, who beat just three of 24 rivals in his three maidens as a juvenile.
However, his dam Bavarica improved significantly for the same yard over longer trips and Gas Monkey, now gelded, steps up beyond 7f (and generally at sharp tracks) for the first time and it would be reasonable to expect some improvement on his all-weather debut. Bavarica, incidentally, won four times on Polytrack.
Sir Roderic is a latecomer to the all-weather, mostly because he's been asked to take on Class 2 handicappers for most of his career. He ran in, among others, the Spring Mile, Spring Cup, International Handicap and Betfred Mile last year.
He didn't really feature in any of the big prizes, but a peak mark of 97 has now slipped to 79 ahead of this all-weather debut. He is also being ridden by Oisin Murphy, who has won four times on Sir Plato from the same yard but tonight rides the class-dropper.
Unlike the first race, there is a bit more to go on when assessing a race full of three-year-olds rated up to 85. In this race, it is bottom weight Scenery that draws the eye most.
He improved from his first start to his second, and a backwards step on the third can be easily forgiven on account of it being in a valuable sales race at Newmarket. His previous third at Ascot, behind subsequent Doncaster Stakes winner Speak In Colours, looks like good form and, on his first run since being gelded, he enters handicaps off a mark of 73.
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