Tralee can land the honours again for Megan in Ladies' Derby
Back Tralee Hills @ 7.06/1 in the 18:01 at Epsom
Habitual hold-up performer Tralee Hills is back at Epsom on Thursday, and back in the Ladies' Derby following his epic 5L triumph in the race 12 months ago.
He was partnered by Serena Brotherton on that occasion, and got a copybook ride from rear, and while he conceded first run on the two placed horses, his stamina well and truly kicked in as he careered away on the outside. Brotherton however is on board rival Lady Reset for David Pipe, with Megan Jordan getting the leg-up on Tralee.
It could be a case from his trainer Simon Hodgson in going for the 5lb claim, which puts the selection in a ballpark figure off his last win.
Rain is forecast for Thursday, so I am hoping there's some cut in the ground as that suits Tralee Hills best. Songo is a clear market rival and in form, but he might need the ground quick.
Hopefully with the 18:01 time, we don't get a clash with the action at Crayford!
Back Pretender for successive Grimes Hurdle wins
Back Sole Pretender @ 6.05/1 in the 18:10 at Tipperary
It's another last year winner selection over at Tipp. Sole Pretender for Norman Lee is a horse I have plenty of time for, and he's going about his business superbly this term.
If only all selections were as reliable as him - I put the 8yo for his chase debut at Ballinrobe in May and he jumped them into the ground for a 12L win.
He wasn't so impressive last time at Roscommon, having to work a little harder than the market price of 2/9 suggested, but he still won to maintain his unbeaten fences record.
Switching back to hurdles today is interesting in the feature Grimes Hurdle, as he beat Darasso in this 12 months ago with his usual fine display of jumping from the front.
Gort-based Lee has described him as the best horse he's ever had, praising his cruising speed and sheer accuracy of jumping. He has already won nine times in 16 starts.
I imagine he'll have another crack at the Galway Hurdle at the end of the month, but conditions should suit him well for Thursday and I expect another bold show from the front. He beat six JP McManus horses in the race last year, and he's got five this time around.