Monday's free feature is always the Pace tab, which we make freely available to all readers for all races, including the following free races of the day...
- 1.10 Downpatrick
- 1.20 Ripon
- 3.10 Epsom
- 3.25 Chepstow
- 4.10 Roscommon
- 4.45 Cartmel
There are a couple of UK Class 3 contests above including an interestingly tight little affair at Epsom, but we've not been jumping for a while and I'm currently typing this from about 25 miles away from the track, I thought I'd tackle the 4.45 Cartmel. It's a 7-runner, Class 3, handicap chase for horses aged 4 and over. The trip is 2m5f on good ground (they're watering to keep it good, the weather is glorious up here right now) and these are the contenders for a first prize of £5,882...
Pink Eyed Pedro is a reliable sort, making the frame in 11 of 17 handicap chases, including three places at Grades 2 & 3 in the last 12 months, the most recent being over 2m6f at Market Rasen last month off a mark of 142. He was a runner up at Worcester at Class 2 off today's mark last time out off today's mark, but now wears first time cheekpieces as he drops in class. He goes best on good ground, gets the trip and has a good relationship/record with today's jockey. I expect another decent effort here.
Solar Impulse shouldn't be getting any better at the age of 11 and his overall chase record is decent but not spectacular at 7 wins from 51, but he is 11F1 from his last four and the one he didn't win was a fall at the last fence when three lengths clear! He's up 7lbs for his most recent win and is now some 22lbs higher than the start of this recent resurgence and whilst he could go well again, he hasn't won a race off a 130+ mark since the 2016 Cheltenham Festival. He's a former course and distance winner, who'll definitely give it a go, but he might just be a little too high in the weights now.
Roi de Dubai looks like he might be out of his depth here on just his fourth attempt over fences. He was a reasonable hurdler in Ireland and is currently 221 over these bigger obstacles. They look like good results and you can only beat what's put in front of you, but they were a trio of poor races in Ireland and after he won, he was then only 7th of 15, beaten by over 16 lengths back hurdling last week. Reverting back to fences suggests the plan is unclear for him, so he's best left alone here.
Minella Trump is another reliable/consistent sort, whose recent results suggest he's in good nick and his yard are going well right now too. He has finished in the first three home in 10 of his 12 starts, but many of those were small field affairs, like when he got off the mark over fences LTO, winning a head to head match with Eskendash by 7 lengths, which has earned him a 2lb rise in weight. That was his first run in over three months after winning over hurdles at Perth and now having had that recent turn over fences, might have more to give/show.
Brelan D'As has the worst looking set of recent results on the form side of the race card and sadly, closer inspections says they're as bad (if not worse) than the bare numbers suggest. He was a runner-up in a Class 3, 3m chase at Ludlow in mid-December on his last run of 2020, but 2021 has been a disappointment with him being pulled up at Wincanton, 16th of 18 at Aintree (beaten by 62L), pulled up at Kelso, 5th of 9 (16L) and last of six (56L) here over course and distance before finishing 6th of 8 , over 40 lengths adrift at Uttoxeter last time out. His mark has gone from 138 to 122 in the process and whilst he's more than capable of such a low mark, he's not for me.
Elmono seems to have lost his way somewhat this year after a good 2020 where his three starts yielded a win and two runner-up finishes. He started with being 2nd of 8, beaten by a neck at this track over 3m1½f, before winning over the same track/trip and then was a runner-up again at Perth over 3m½f, beaten by 7.5 lengths in a higher grade than this one. 2021 however, has seen finishes of 465 and he was beaten by 39 lengths over three miles at Class 4 last time out. He's now up in class and drops back in trip to a distance that looks on the short side for him and there's little I like about his chances doing so.
Brotherly Company also steps up in class after a defeat at Class 4 last time out, but in his defence, he was only beaten by a fraction over half a length in a 3 mile chase at Perth. He'd gone there on a hat-trick after wins at Southwell over 3m1½f and then here at Cartmel over today's course and distance. He has actually won four of his last seven start across chases and bumpers and although he's on a career high chase mark, he is in good form and will receive weight all round. Going and trip work for him, but it's his first crack at Class 3 chasing.
At this point, I'm not too keen on Brelan D'As, Elmono or Roi de Dubai, but I'll keep an open mind before looking at relevant form via Instant Expert...
Of the three I'm not keen on, Roi de Dubai has no relevant experience, Brelan D'As has the only full line of red, but Elmono does at least have that course win from 2020. Of the others, Brotherly Company catches the eye, but he's 8lbs higher than his last win. Minella Trump also has good numbers, bar this being his Cartmel debut and is only 2lbs higher than his last win.
The free feature is the pace tab and this is what it tells me about this race...
Basically, don't hold back, as you'll struggle to win here from off the pace. All three other racing styles do as well or better than expected and they're also the best for making the frame. Our pace prediction suggests possible contested speed, because over their last three races, these are the averaged racing styles of our seven runners...
I don't see Roi De Dubai living with the other two and providing they don't go too hard at it early door, then it's possible that Minella Trump and Brotherly Company could end up creating themselves a 2-horse race.
Of the four I felt had the best chances, Minella Trump & Brotherly Company looks best placed to kick on from a pace perspective and I think I'd want to be with these two against the field based on the pace angle.
Brotherly Company is up 8lbs and tackles Class 3 for the first time, but Minella Trump has made the frame at Class 2 over hurdles, gets the trip readily enough and is only up 2lbs for his last win. His yard are in fine form with 7 winners and a runner-up from 14 runners over fences since the start of July and these include 6 from 8 at Class 3, 5 from 10 for jockey Brian Hughes and 5 from 7 for Brian at Class 3.
So, it's Minella Trump (currently 11/4) for me ahead of Brotherly Love (4/1). If I'm to play the tricast/trifecta bets here, then Pink Eyed Pedro completes my top three.