With Placepot pools likely to be spread thinly on Bank Holiday Monday, a small-stakes approach on Chepstow's well-subscribed card makes most sense.
"... to imagine Cocktails At Dawn not winning would be to wish misfortune on him, such was the manner of his success last week."
13:30 - Eight runners makes us loathe to include odds-on favourite Solar Impulse, while the feeling remains that Anteros has bigger targets on his agenda, so Masquerade becomes our best option in leg one. He's a front-runner who has proved fairly consistent so far, his only substandard runs coming when he's been asked to race beyond this trip. The seemingly high chance of an uncontested lead makes Masquerade too tempting to resist.
14:05 - This time we're not so lucky as to have the best Placepot option down the market. Flementime has consistently run to a fairly useful standard in her novice season, most recently when shaping best in a mares' handicap at Exeter from a BHA mark of 125. This is a comparatively straightforward task, at least to make the first three.
14:40 - Our first chase, a novice handicap, would normally be the right time to reach for reinforcements. Not so in this case. Here we have a horse who has finished second, first and first in three chase starts so far, getting better with each run. He's also stepping up in trip, which as he's a half-brother to Grand National winner Mon Mome can't fail to suit. Tokyo Javilex is favourite, but that's the only down side and chancing a couple against him would represent a needless risk.
15:15 - Had Refer remained in the field we'd have had a crack at Cocktails At Dawn, as getting two places behind him in this field would have made for a worthwhile endeavour. However there's now only one; to imagine Cocktails At Dawn not winning would be to wish misfortune on him, such was the manner of his success last week. Bank on him and we'll try to take a cut at one of the later races.
15:50 - This is more like it. Admittedly, there's not one we can trust outright but between a couple of them we should be put in a good position. Galway Jack is the best of them, on a run of three successive good efforts albeit under different conditions to today. As the new recipient of a 'squiggle', Harry The Viking isn't an obvious choice, though his ability to move into a race before he turns it in isn't in doubt, as demonstrated on his penultimate start.
16:25 - This handicap, made up of exposed low-grade horses or youngsters with potential and little else, makes for a tricky last leg. Kapricorne makes more appeal than most, his last run coming in a much stronger race and suggest his stamina was just stretched by the longer trip than he'll tackle today. Second in is Typhon de Guye, who won just yesterday at Towcester but has been in good form otherwise and, bounce theory aside, has relative few negatives in this field.
13:30 - 2
14:05 - 2
14:40 - 1
15:15 - 2
15:50 - 2, 5
16:25 - 4, 11
= 4 lines