Race of the Day - 20:35 Southwell
Southwell hosts an evening jumps card, and this is a two mile handicap hurdle, which looks quite competitive.
Ashoka, trained by Dan Skelton, has had a couple of wins already this year, and has gone up the handicap quite a lot because of this. He is now 18 pounds higher than for the first of those wins, therefore will need to be right at the top of his game to be involved in this. His jockey, Harry Skelton, has a very good long term record here at Southwell. Over the past five years he's had 25 winners (22.12%) and 56 places (49.56%) from 113 runners, for level stakes profits of 7.64 and 9.36 respectively.
The Shortlist is available to all users on a Tuesday, and it shows that Trafalgar Rock is very well suited by today's conditions, when on the 'Place' setting, he has a score of 11. He is at home here at Southwell, and on the going, which is particularly important when it is towards the extremes.
The Instant Expert report highlights the good showing of Trafalgar Rock, and Gran Maestro also comes out reasonably well, with one section of green and four of amber. He is actually five pounds lower than for his last win, therefore if a return to favourable conditions brings out the best in him, he may be able to get involved at a nice price.
We can see that Ashoka has an excellent record in this class of race, so looks sure to go well again if coping with the extra weight.
When looking at the Pace report we can see that it is early leaders who have the best record here over this distance, going on to win 18.83% of their races, with prominent runners next best, at 14.74%. Both of these have produced a small level stakes loss, but this definitely looks the preferable way to race.
Our Three Sons is a confirmed front runner and always likes to be very handy in the early stages of his races. He has the highest pace score, with Matchaway the only other runner who looks to have the potential to want to challenge him for the early lead. If that is the case, then this could be run at a very quick pace, especially given the fast ground, and in taking each other on it could set the race up for one of the others waiting in behind.
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