Through The Card: Chester, Wednesday May 4

Racing returns to Chester on Wednesday
Racing returns to Chester on Wednesday

Timeform take you through the card on the first day of Chester's May meeting.

"The best bet in the race could be Kimberella, who has dropped to a favourable handicap mark (4 lb lower than when winning a warm 5f handicap at York last season)"

14:10 - Copper Knight went backwards slightly from his promising debut when second at Windsor last time, but remains open to improvement and could go one better here. However, Tom Dascombe has a very good record in this race (saddled the winner in 2010 and 2013 and the second in 2011 and 2014) and his Fiery Character could be hard to beat from a good draw, after she got off the mark at the first attempt last time at Newmarket.

14:40 - It would be an almighty shock if Somehow was out of the places here, given she is the sole representative for Aidan O'Brien, who won this race for the fourth time last year with Diamondsandrubies. Somehow is another smartly bred and lightly raced filly who is open to further improvement after doing well to beat a race-fit rival on her reappearance this season, and looks to have an excellent chance of giving O'Brien another winner in this race.

15:10 - Steve Rogers holds an obvious chance and could well be too good for this field, and from a kind draw it is easy to see why he is favourite after proving himself better than ever on his reappearance at Kempton last time, adding to his steadily progressive profile, which is obviously such a huge asset from a handicapping perspective. This race often throws up some surprises though, and it is also worth including John Reel, who makes some appeal at bigger prices considering he may well get an easy lead (drawn low and only confirmed front runner). He could sneak into the places given his track position is likely to be better than most.

15:45 - Despite both having good draws, there is a slight doubt about this trip for market principals Roudee (who didn't look the speedball of old over 5f at Epsom last time) and Growl, who is yet to race over the minimum trip. Mukaynis may also be better at 6f, and the best bet in the race could be Kimberella, who has dropped to a favourable handicap mark (4 lb lower than when winning a warm 5f handicap at York last season), and shaped well on his reappearance at Ripon when better than the bare result (not ideally positioned). Last year's winner Lexis Hero is drawn wider this time around and will need some luck, but is too well handicapped to ignore (4 lb lower now) and could sneak a place with a bit of luck and a decent gallop to aim at.

16:20 - Maljaa progressed well through the handicap ranks last season, winning three of his last six starts and finishing second in the other three. He produced his best effort on his last start and with the potential for more to come, is well worth a try outside of handicapping company. He is preferred to Sir Maximilian here, given his busy winter in Dubai, which was likely to be his seasonal target.

16:55 - Paul Hanagan looks to have a good chance of landing a quick-fire double with Mulk, who was probably the pick of the field in the Wood Ditton at the Craven Meeting last time, having had to make his challenge from much further back than the other principals, and with this step up in trip to suit based on that effort, he should be very hard to beat.

17:25 - Red Verdon was undoubtedly eye-catching last time when meeting trouble at Doncaster on his handicap debut, but he doesn't make much appeal at the prices, and the one to be with in that regard could be Soldier In Action, who ran creditably in a warm race at Sandown last time and may appreciate the return to a left-handed track here. He should also get the lead, and may be hard to pass under Franny Norton, who does particularly well at this track.

Recommendations:

Back Kimberella in the 15:45
Back Soldier In Action in the 17:25

Placepot permutation:
14:10 - 6
14:40 - 8
15:10 - 7, 12
15:45 - 12, 15
16:20 - 5
16:55 - 4

= 4 lines

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