Alan's each-way bet finished in the frame yesterday and today he has two selections from Chepstow and Goodwood..
"He has the potential for further improvement and this doesn't look like the strongest of handicaps."
Alan King's Elgin was a useful novice hurdler last season, where he won twice and finished second three other occasions. He then ran a respectable seventh in the Supreme Novices at the Cheltenham Festival. We haven't seen him since that March day but he goes well fresh, he finished second in an Aintree bumper after a similar 200+ day break this time last year. He has the potential for further improvement and this doesn't look like the strongest of handicaps, his mark of 140 is more than workable as he steps into this company for the first time.
The biggest danger in the race could come in the shape of I'm A Game Changer who put in a very decent effort in Listed company at Market Rasen last month and that should have sharpened him up for this. A mark of 133 looks attractive and Richard Johnson stays on board which is another positive. Conditions should suit and he has to be on the shortlist. But I just think there is more potential in Elgin, I think he could go onto much bigger and better things for the Elite Racing Club members.
After winning on his first start, in a course record time for juveniles at Newbury, Tartini started his three-year-old career lining up alongside the likes of Cracksman in the Derby trial at Epsom and not only was he sent off as short as 4/1 he was only beaten five lengths that day. Perhaps that race had a negative effect on him as he has been a bit disappointing since, but he obviously has some ability and for John Gosden to stick with the colt he must still think he is capable of more than a mid 90s handicapper.
The Clarehaven handler is on record as saying that "he will be a much better horse with cut in the ground and I think he will stay a mile and a half plus." The ground at Goodwood is currently declared as soft, good to soft in places and this will be the first time the colt has run on ground with the word "soft" in the description. I think if Tartini can rediscover some of that juvenile potential and with conditions to suit he could be difficult to beat.
2017 Overall (prior to this week): +37.97 pts
This week so far...
Staked: 4 pts
Returned: 1.3 pts