Rory Delargy advises readers to put potential ahead of experience at Wolverhampton...
"Those drawn very high over the 6f trip at Dunstall Park are not disadvantaged as a rule, and it's significant that Equity Risk was parked very wide when scoring on debut, suggesting he'll cope well with seeing plenty of daylight again."
The best bet of the day on Monday is Equity Risk in the 16:50 at Wolverhampton, a 6f handicap for 3-y-o's. The selection won on his sole start last year over C&D, and has been handed a very fair looking opening mark of 75. That mark looks even more attractive when one considers that he is actually receiving weight from Sewn Up today, despite that one finishing seven lengths back in fifth on that occasion. It's true that the latter has shown that he deserves his current mark having won twice in handicaps this year, but his exploits merely go to underline the strength of that maiden event. The runner-up hasn't run since, but third-placed Macaabra landed a fair seven-furlong maiden at Catterick last week, and the form looks decent enough.
The most impressive aspect of that win by Equity Risk was the way he quickened 2¾ lengths clear when given the office, without Neil Callan having to reach for his whip. The son of Henrythenavigator is a strong sort with plenty of physical scope. He doesn't need to improve much to take a hand in today's contest, but it will be a big disappointment if he doesn't have a lot more to offer. A wide draw will put plenty of people off him, as the consensus is that a low stall is a must in sprint races at Wolverhampton, and that is true to a degree over five furlongs, but those drawn very high over the six-furlong trip at Dunstall Park are not disadvantaged as a rule, and it's significant that Equity Risk was parked very wide when scoring on debut, suggesting he'll cope well with seeing plenty of daylight again.
Jonjo O'Neill isn't known for his all-weather exploits, but the Jackdaw's Castle trainer looks to have solid claims with polytrack bumper winner Keep Kicking in the 1½m handicap at 15:20. The son of Tiger Hill hasn't achieved what he might have over hurdles, and he looks the type to do better in Flat handicaps. Having run well on all 3 qualifying runs, he isn't overburdened for his handicap bow, and the return to this trip will help. With Tidy Affair a non-runner, The Blue Dog looking vulnerable off a career-high mark and Singzak likely to need the run after an absence, the race doesn't look as competitive as it might.
The money which arrived for Layla's Dancer on her return from an absence here last week seems to have been inspired by Mick Appleby's excellent record with others' cast-offs rather than specific stable confidence, and she was rather disappointing, leaving Rock Song as the obvious threat. Representing the in-form yard of John Mackie, for whom he scored at the first time of asking, he's one I respect greatly, but the vote goes to the unexposed Keep Kicking.
Both at Wolverhampton