HAVE some Fun in the Sportesa Chester Cup.
FUN MAC – placed in this race in the last two years – likes soft ground, is at his best when fresh and is really well weighted. His low draw in stall four gives him plenty of hope.
1.50 CHESTER: This tricky handicap looks a right Weez. Last year BARAWEEZ won this race before returning to Chester two weeks later to land a similar race over today’s course and distance.
He had the widest draw when down the field on his only subsequent run at this track and I’m not worried about his comeback effort when well beaten at Thirsk as he always needs his first race of the season.
The handicapper has surprisingly dropped him a couple of pounds for that so he’s no on the same rating as he was when successful 12 months ago.
Ptarmigan Ridge is the obvious danger. He won here over slightly shorter in September when trained by James Fanshawe.
His debut for Richard Hughes was most promising and he’s got a nice draw. It’s hard to see how he won’t run well.
Love Dreams is consistent. He was only mastered close home at Goodwood last Saturday but stall 16 is not much use.
Shady McCoy should take a step forward from his Haydock comeback. He likes soft ground and rarely runs a bad race but that means he’s not particularly well weighted.
2.25 CHESTER: It all Adds up in the Homeserve Huxley Stakes. ADDEYBB has to have soft ground so the recent rain has done him the world of good.
Last year he kicked off with an impressive Lincoln win before stepping up in grade to take a Sandown Group 2.
Both those races were over 1m but he seems to stay today’s longer trip ok.
Matterhorn has been mopping up on the all-weather. His seven-length success in the valuable Easter Classic at Lingfield on Good Friday was a fine performance but it’s anyone’s guess if he’ll be as good switched to soft turf.
Forest Ranger landed this race last season. This year’s race looks to be much deeper but he should run his race on ground that shouldn’t cause him any problems.
3.00 CHESTER: SPUTNIK PLANUM looks out of this world in the Boodles Diamond Handicap.
He’s bred to be smart but never really lived up to expectations when trained by David Lanigan.
That meant he was potentially well treated when snapped up by Mick Appleby and he duly won his first two starts for his new trainer last spring.
Fitness has to be taken on trust but I’m sure he’s still nicely weighted and his Doncaster win a year ago came on soft ground.
My fancy has bottom weight and he might have most to fear from the one at the top of the handicap. Restorer won this race last year, is still fairly treated and stays further.
With Ryan Moore in the saddle there’s a lot to like about his chances. Aasheq and Frankuus are others with claims.
Templegate's TV tips
- 1.50 Chester – Baraweez (Click here to see the best odds)
- 2.25 Chester – Addeybb (Click here to see the best odds)
- 3.00 Chester – Sputnik Planum (Click here to see the best odds)
- 3.35 Chester – Fun Mac (Click here to see the best odds)
3.35 CHESTER: Go on a Mac attack in the Chester Cup. FUN MAC ran a belter when runner-up in this race 12 months ago. The rest of the season wasn’t as good but the hot summer wasn’t much help.
The good news is he has slipped right down the weights and he gets his favoured soft ground.
Hughie Morrison’s hope also hit the frame in this big staying handicap two years ago and he has got a great record when returning from a break.
With a nice draw in stall four I can’t see how he can be out of the frame at a decent price and he might well make it third time lucky.
Mark Johnston fires four bullets headed by impressive Musselburgh winner Austrian School. He’s gone up 8lbs but he’s clearly an improving young stayer with a bright future.
His stablemates Making Miracles, Watersmeet and Lucky Deal have not fared as well with the draw, which is still important despite the marathon distance.
Cleonte is the other one I like. He ran a nice prep when third behind Dee Ex Bee in an Ascot Group 3 and this trip is right up his street.
Shabeeb looks to have been lined up for this having been bought out of Roger Varian’s yard by Marwan Koukash.
The Chester-obsessed owner won this race last year with Magic Circle, who was also having his first run for trainer Ian Williams. He’s sure to be primed for today but he could have done without the rain.
Latest in Horse Racing
2.00 Divine Spirit
2.35 Swift Wing
3.45 Royal Residence
4.20 Aweedram (treble)
4.55 Double Kodiac
5.30 Billy Ray
2.25 Addeybb (nap)
3.00 Sputnik Planum
3.35 Fun Mac (nb)
5.15 Coeur De Lion
1.40 Henrietta Bell
2.10 Van Gogh Du Granit
2.45 Lake Washington
3.20 Broughtons Admiral
3.55 Truckers Tangle
5.05 Konigin Ara
5.20 Quiet Word
6.50 Group Stage
7.20 Twist ‘N’ Shake
7.50 Me Too Nagasaki
8.20 Sussex Girl
6.00 Paper Star
7.00 Sheepscar Lad
7.30 Seen The Lyte
8.00 In Trutina
8.30 Divin Bere
5.40 Sing Bertie
6.10 Champs Inblue
6.40 Gobi Sunset
7.10 Genuine Approval
8.10 Filles De Fleur