Alan Thomson, the former Racing Editor at the Daily Record, picks out five to follow at Ascot, York and Chepstow on Saturday afternoon.
ROCK N ROLL RANSOM (4.50) was given a textbook ride at Ascot last month, with Kieren Fallon winning with a good bit up his sleeve. Luca Cumani’s three-year-old returns to the track on Saturday and the handicapper’s 8lb rise may well underestimate his rate of progress.
Coral sponsor a very competitive card at York where DESCARO (2.45) has every chance of completing his late-season hat-trick in the 2m 2f handicap. Descaro has looked a different horse since David O’Meara gave him a stamina test and he toyed with Tillietudlum, who reopposes here, all the way up the straight at Ayr’s Western meeting.
The jumps season moves up a gear at Chepstow, with Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh sure to enjoy a huge following with runners in all seven races at the Welsh track. France has been a happy hunting ground for the stable’s juvenile recruits and DOMTALIVE (2.20) can step up on his third place at Auteuil back in May. The winner of that event went in again last month so the form is probably solid enough in this sort of company.
GULLIBLE GORDON (5.10) is the type to do best fresh and he strolled home by 23 lengths in the novices’ chase at the corresponding meeting 12 months ago. He wouldn’t want it too soft but the weather forecast makes that an unlikely scenario.
MEREHEAD (5.45) is worth the wait in the bumper. He found only Nicky Henderson’s Kid Cassidy too strong at Newbury in March and the winner advertised the merit of the form when running third to Willie Mullins’ useful Bishopsfurze at the Punchestown festival.