Three days of top class racing action gets under way on the Knavesmire as York's Dante meeting sets the scene for the season ahead.
"If you are a fan of handicaps my friends, my goodness, look no further than York with races that top and tail the card worthy of your full attention."
There will be classic clues, form lines to follow and with a bit of luck some real stand out performances this week all which can prove valuable information for the rest of the season.
Two Group races headline the card with the 2.40 Clipper Logistics 6f Sprint playing chief support to the girls in the 3.10 Group 3 Musidora Stakes. If you are a fan of handicaps my friends, my goodness, look no further than York with races that top and tail the card worthy of your full attention.
Away from the feature meeting there is flat action at Bath and two jumps meetings at Worcester and Perth.
Sir Michael out to match Sir Henry at York
Epsom Oaks credentials put to the test as the three-year-old Fillies' take centre stage in the 3.10 Group 3 Tattersalls Musidora Stakes. We highlighted in yesterday's column the weight of support behind current favorite Teona but that seems to have eased now as momentum builds for Sir Michael Stoute's Noon Star.
A ninth win in the race for Stoute will see him match Sir Henry Cecil's record in the race and she sets the standard in my book but see what Timeform think of her chances in their runner by runner guide here.
Whichever way you are leaning an impressive performance by any of the eight runners will surely have a ripple effect on the Epsom Oaks market for which today's market leader Teona is 5.95/1 and Noon Star is 8.88/1 with the rest bigger, so make sure if you fancy one in today's race have a touch in the ante post market also - this should be standard practice so forgive me.
Dudman at the double
Top tipster Alan Dudman goes in search of a York special.
Handicapper reacts to 100/1 into 13/2 winning gamble
We discussed "gambles" in the final word column on Monday, well now the UK handicapper has had his say on Warwick scorer Danilo D'Airy who won from 38lbs out of the handicap off a chase mark of 35.
It was actions rather than words as the eight-year-old was hit with a monumental 52lb rise although in theory off this new mark he would only have to give 7lbs to the runner-up that he beat by nine lengths, so the handicapper has not been the strict mistress he was last season and has at least given him a chance.
Trainer Robert Bevis explained in the Stewards report: "The yard appeared to be in better form at present and Danilo D'Airy had appreciated the step up to three miles as well as benefiting from a return to jumping fences, with the gelding having won a point-to-point."
Fair enough, but don't get me started on that trainer form nonsense, that's another column.
Please sir, can I have some Moore?
Of course you can - Ryan Moore has four rides on Day 1 at York with My Frankel, Oxted, Snowfall and Hint Of Stars and there is only one place to get his thoughts.
Race of the day
The 2.40 Group 2 Clipper Logistics Stakes probably should be filling this section today but I found it far too tricky to have a bet in. We stick with York and 6f but instead try and unravel the 2.10 Tyres Handicap in which the Betfair Sportsbook pays 6 places.
Manigordo cashed in on a reduced handicap mark at Thirsk two weeks ago in which a change of tactics and a drop back to 6f worked the oracle for his new connections. That race was won in a good time and bowling along in front seemed to suit him.
Those tactics have been seen to good effect at York over the years with 4/10 winners of this having led or been ridden prominently and 9 of the last 10 years have seen the same fill the runner-up spot.
He had some rock solid handicap form for Richard Hannon last season over 7f off handicap marks in the high 90's after a promising two-year-old campaign so an 8lb rise for his latest win shouldn't be a burden to success here. He makes most appeal.
There are eight course and distance winners in this field including Woven who shaped as though a return to form is imminent after a good neck second at Redcar on his first start for Michael Dods. He returns to the scene of his sole UK victory and a bold show could be on the cards.
Most punters will have a tale to tell about Brian The Snail but he has been in fine form of late and wasn't disgraced over 5f at Chester last week but the step back up to 6f is firmly in his favor. He looks very fairly treated on his penultimate start at Lingfield behind subsequent Group 3 Abernant Stakes winner Summerghand and he did go close behind the same horse in the Steward's Cup off this 12lb lower turf mark so I couldn't put you off.
Betfair tipster Rhys Williams has a trio of selections at Perth, which includes a two point stake in the Hunters Chase.
Backing handicap SP favorites in three-year-old only races at York yield a £1 level stake profit of £44.22 in the last 10 years 44/133. Today's qualifying race is the 3.40.
Perth not to be ignored
Jumps fans can still get in on the action over at the Perth with their seven race card meeting this evening but Newton Abbot is off after a deluge of rain on Tuesday.
Trainer Fergal O'Brien comes from furthest afield on tonight's card and has made the 376 mile journey from his base in the Cotswolds with the one runner. He has Cage Of Fear in the 7.10 Salutation Hotel, Scotland's Most Historic Hotel Handicap Hurdle.
Slanelough has been popular in the 5.40 Ballathie House Hotel Novices' Handicap Chase and Ben Haslam will be hoping that a drop into a 0-105 for Countister in the 6.10 Dunkeld House Hotel Mares' Handicap Hurdle may help her cash in on her reduced mark.
Timeform Power up for York
Timeform offer up their three best bets at York.
Cash Cow Calvin see's overnight support
If you missed Tony Calvin's ITV races column fear not, it is here.
There is very little for me to have a moan about today with the sun shining and the York Dante meeting set to launch so I thought I would leave you with two eye catcher's from Tuesday's racing to go in the trackers.
Zorovan loves Ayr and was very unfortunate in the 6.30 Class 6 0-60 when denied a clear run. He is back on his last winning mark of 60 and will surely capitalize before long.
Midnight Bride failed in search for a four timer at Beverley in the 3.15 but hated every minute of that sharp track and a more conventional course will see her remain ahead of the handicapper off 75.
Until tomorrow. Be lucky.
Follow Daryl Carter on Twitter @DarylCarter7