Possible the softer ground will bring improvement
Redcar 13:43: Come On John 1pt win 16/1
I wasn't surprised to see plenty of early support for Zlatan as he drops back in trip this afternoon but while I think he's now reached about the right price, there's another horse making the same drop from 1m2f to a mile who appeals at a bigger price.
Come On John only beat one rival home at Haydock last time but he raced a bit keenly early on and travelled well into contention just over two furlongs out before being squeezed up and not seeing out the trip.
He was well beaten prior to that at Hamilton but he was never travelling that day so that easily can be excused and he had run well prior to that at Pontefract when beaten two lengths off a 4lb higher mark than he races off today.
He also ran well over this C&D earlier in the season when beaten a short head having had a slightly awkward start to the race and he followed that up with a comfortable victory at Thirsk.
I'm hoping the key to his chance today is the softer ground as his action suggests that he could be better suited by that than the good or quicker ground that he's often raced on and the drop back to a straight mile is also likely to see him in a better light.
This is a wide open race and it might be that there are others who have a bit more improvement in them but I think the market has overreacted to his last two runs and any 12/1 or bigger appeals.
Margins of victory underplay superiority
Uttoxeter 13:50: The Questioner 1.5pt e/w 9/2
The Questioner is two from two in handicaps and I'm hopeful he can make it a hat-trick today off a 4lb higher mark than he won both races last season.
He was stepped up to 3m½f and cheekpieces were applied for the first time at Southwell and after racing just in behind the leaders for much of the race, he was sent to the front entering the home straight.
He was joined at 2 out by Miss M but got the better of that rival and as soon as Hillview came to challenge after the last, The Questioner found plenty and powered clear of that rival to win comfortably before the stewards made a farcical decision that was overturned on appeal. Hillview has won three of his five races since and is now rated 32lb higher than he was that day.
The Questioner ran off the same mark ten days later over three miles on soft ground at Wetherby and similar tactics were used. He went to the front between the last two hurdles and idled his way up the run-in to a 1¼ length victory.
His idleness means he was only raised 4lb for his victory at Wetherby and his performances there and at Southwell suggested he could have plenty more to come at this low level. He also has the additional benefit of Toby Wynne being able to claim an additional 3lb as he's riding for his trainer in a conditionals race.
This is his first run of the season whereas most of his rivals have had a fairly recent run so it might be that they are slightly sharper but the yard had a winner yesterday that was returning from a break so hopefully he will be fit enough for his return. I think he should be favourite given the potential he showed last season and any 7/2 or bigger appeals.