The Sunderland Festival continues on RPGTV and while English eyes will be focused elsewhere, no one ever turned down the chance to back a few winners. Darrell Williams has our tips...
"Bubbly Bluebird took his own unbeaten Sunderland tally to three from three with another excellent front-running display in his Classic heat last week and he can take the scalp of classy King Turbo if as expected he gets first run."
And remember, with the races streamed live at www.betfair.com you can catch all the action while also cheering on England!
Tommy and Ted the perfect combination
The Grand Prix kicks things off - with two of the semi-finals scheduled before the football even starts - and having done this column a favour last week there's no reason to desert Millhouse Tommy (18:48). Ted Soppitt's charge, an impressive Trial Stakes winner pre-event showed his versatility to maintain his unbeaten Course and Distance tally in the heats and has clearly taken to the Wearside circuit. Lightfoot King is a concern, especially from trap one, but is hard to evaluate after seemingly holding every chance against Donation last week, who herself will need plenty to go right with an abundance of pace on her inside.
Bluebird can fly early in Classic match
Bubbly Bluebird, winner of the Puppy Plate here two summers ago, took his own unbeaten Sunderland tally to three from three with another excellent front-running display in his Classic heat last week and can take the scalp of classy King Turbo in what appears a match in their semi-final (19:52). The key is the Champagne Club Syndicate runner's consistency at the boxes and if as expected he gets first run on his rival he is unlikely to be reeled in.
Magpie may be out and gone
Save from an uncharacteristically slow start last time, Swift Magpie's consistency at the lids has served him well and he looks ripe for a bet in a heat of the Puppy Plate (20:22) with Steve Anderson's youngster unlikely to be troubled if he breaks in front.
Stats the way for Expert
Few run Sunderland better than Droopys Expert and while he will need to be brave again in his Classic semi-final (19:22) given his tendency to cut the corner it's hard to resist Angela Harrison's charge whose five from six record over CD (and an unbeaten three from three in trap five) clearly shows his liking for the circuit.
Kennelmate Droopys Trapper will be a hotpot to enhance his own unbeaten (three from three) tally over the 450m trip in the Puppy Plate (20:37) but is hard to resist after a catalogue of eye-catching performances, while his ability to pounce from off the speed if needed can also only serve in his favour.
Kilmore Lemon will be equally short in his Festival Flyer heat (21:22) but having broken the Yarmouth clock recently, Pat Janssen's charge flew round in a trial here the other week to suggest he will take all the beating in the sprinters' event.