Alan's best bet of the day won yesterday and he is looking to make it three winning days in a row with two selections from Salisbury and Thirsk...
"he looks to have more to offer off this mark, after running in Group and Listed company last season."
John Shanahan has a few runners at Thirsk today but it is the lightly-raced colt The Tartan Spartan that caught my eye the most. This is just his sixth career start and he ran well, finishing third, after a 197 day break behind stable companion Carbon Dating in a decent handicap at Musselburgh. He was given a 2lb rise in the weights for that effort but that seems fair and he looks to have more to offer off this mark, after running in Group and Listed company last season. The ground shouldn't be a problem and he gets a small weight-for-age allowance.
Its hard to see where the dangers will come from. Yorkidding ran at Ripon yesterday and while still not a declared non-runner at the time of writing, I am not expecting him to take part. Paris Protocol is the choice of Ryan Moore and therefore demands respect. But he is hard to fancy, returning from a 239 day break and was well beaten in a Class 2 handicap at Ascot last September. He is yet to win in handicap company and his only win to date was his Class 4 maiden victory in 2015. I think The Tartan Spartan has a great opportunity to get his head in front today.
This looks a particularly weak maiden and a perfect opportunity for Mabs Cross from the Michael Dods yard to get his first win. This incredibly cheap three-year-old filly only cost £3,000 as a yearling, finished down the pack in her opener at Pontefract but she was never really put in the race and allowed to come home in her own time.
There has been early market support for the filly both on the Sportsbook and in the Exchange which I think is interesting. She should come on for that first run and the Dods team are very good at finding the right races for their charges. Sometimes it pays to listen to the market, especially in these weak maidens and I am prepared to give her a chance to prove herself at 11/4.
2017 Overall (prior to this week): -5.11 pts
This week so far...
Staked: 4 pts
Returned: 8.26 pts