Bill Esdaile previews the best of tomorrow’s high class action
WE are heading towards the final few chapters of the 2015 Flat season but there’s still plenty of top class action to come, not least tomorrow’s Cambridgeshire (3.45pm).
This is one of the handicaps on the calendar with great heritage and history will well and truly be made if Bronze Angel can become the first to win the race for a third time.
Marcus Tregoning’s stable star comes alive at this time of year. He bolted up in this race 12 months ago, before going on to take the inaugural Balmoral Handicap at Ascot on unsuitably heavy ground.
He’s a must for the shortlist, but you just have to wonder if the 4lb penalty he incurred for his recent Doncaster success is going to anchor him tomorrow.
With a total of 35 runners, this is always a difficult race to narrow down the field. However, my first selection is DONNCHA, who can give local trainer Robert Eddery a huge win.
This four-year-old has run a number of solid races this season. He was unlucky in the Betfred Mile at Goodwood last time and has been given a break since then.
All ground comes alike to him and the impressive Tom Marquand takes 3lb out of the saddle. Claiming jockeys have won two of the last four editions of the Cambridgeshire, so his booking is a positive.
Donncha is 25/1 with Betway which is a more than fair price.
The three-year-olds have bossed the big races recently, so Portage and the well-backed Third Time Lucky are respected, but they’re short enough for such a competitive race.
My other selection is Andrew Balding’s MAN OF HARLECH who was second behind Bronze Angel at Doncaster a couple of weeks ago.
The Dansili gelding is very lightly-raced and is improving at the right time. His best form has come on a softer surface and there should still be some dig in the ground tomorrow afternoon.
Although he’s yet to run over a mile, the way he’s been seeing out his races suggests that he’ll improve for this nine furlong trip. The 25/1 with Betway looks good value.
John Gosden has won the first leg of the Autumn Double three times and another victory would make him the joint leading trainer in the race’s history.
He has just the one contender, Royal Hunt Cup hero Gm Hopkins who bolted-up in the Silver Cambridgeshire last year.
The son of Dubawi is very high in the weights now, though, and prefers a quicker surface than he’s likely to get tomorrow.
Ryan Moore is back in the mix following his neck injury. He will get the leg up on the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Abseil, who is undeniably well-handicapped, although finds it hard to win.
Over at Chester, MARCRET is fancied to land his fifth success on the Roodee (4.50pm), following an easy win earlier this month.
He’s now up to a mark of 95, but the in-form James Unett has booked Daniel Muscutt to take 3lb off, while he has a decent draw in stall three.
The eight-year-old should still be competitive off this mark and he won with such authority last time that he should be able to go in again.
Recent course and distance winner Gramercy could pose the biggest threat.
Donncha e/w 3.45pm Newmarket (tomorrow)
Man Of Harlech e/w 3.45pm Newmarket (tomorrow)
Marcret 4.50pm Chester (tomorrow)