Hamilton provides the straightest, if not the shortest, road to the Placepot on Sunday.
"Outsider Lord Franklin also gets in, his consistency better than most and this being the weakest race he’s contested for a while."
14:20 - There's no easy way through the nursery. The saving grace is that favourite Emef Rock hasn't been consistent enough to enter our calculations. Dream Approval has, while she also found a little bit of improvement to gain a second victory last time. Chances Are gets in as second choice. She's well handicapped on the evidence of her first two starts and has plenty of speed, though enthusiasm is tempered by a poor run last time and this step up in trip, which admittedly shouldn't trouble her on pedigree.
14:50 - Royal Connoisseur is the best horse in the race and is experiencing an upsurge in form following a win on his penultimate start. He's essentially ungenuine, hence his Timeform 'squiggle', though we're less worried than most about temperament issues in this form- even if Royal Connoisseur backs out in a finish, second will do.
15:20 - Sprint minor events are a bit like racing's Twilight Zone, they can bend the rules and create scenarios that would never play out in the real world. You can surely forgive us, then, for a cautious banker on Baccarat in this one. Baccarat has won a big sprint handicap this year and can compete in Group 1s, as he showed when eighth from an unpromising position in the Sprint Cup last time.
15:50 - Normal Placepot rules would lead us towards taking second-favourite Barbarous in this maiden. There are two problems: he's a debutant and isn't really bred to need this far, this soon. Contrast with favourite Yorkidding, who has a run's worth of experience behind him and is very much bred for a mile this year. A banker on him makes more sense.
16:20 - There are plenty of alternatives to favourite Remember Rocky in this handicap. Tectonic is our first choice. He has his quirks but is back in form for now after winning last time from an unpromising position, for which he's incurred a token rise. Outsider Lord Franklin also gets in, his consistency better than most and this being the weakest race he's contested for a while.
16:50 - Morning non-runners leave us with just four in this handicap. There are a few ways you could play it, by picking one now and laying it should we reach this far for example, though the official advice has to be to take them all, as there is a case to be made for each of the four.
14:20 - 2, 3
14:50 - 2
15:20 - 3
15:50 - 7
16:20 - 1, 2
16:50 - 1, 2, 5, 6
= 16 lines