Hugo Palmer: Exclusive verdict on my Saturday runners at Ayr and elsewhere
Hugo Palmer has five runners in action on Saturday afternoon, including one in the Ayr Silver Cup. Here are the Betfair Ambassador's views on their form and prospects...
"We thought he might have to settle for Bronze, so it’s great to get into the Silver Cup as it’s worth more money, although it’s only worth more money if you finish at the right end of the field, of course. We go up there with hope, but knowing that he needs to rediscover his spark if he’s to be competitive."
Ayr, 14:40 - Hyperfocus needs to rediscover his spark
He's a little bit of an enigma, and we've tried various things to help him rekindle the spark which saw him win twice around this time last year on soft ground, and we haven't been able to identify any particular reason why he hasn't refound his best form, so
I'm hoping that a return to testing ground at this time of year will work, and maybe he's just an autumn horse. He's tried a hood before in an attempt to settle him, and we're trying a visor now to see how we get on.
The one advantage of him not hitting form just yet is that he's on a mark he's shown he can win off, but winning off a mark is one thing, and winning the Ayr Silver Cup off that mark is another.
We thought he might have to settle for Bronze, so it's great to get into the Silver Cup as it's worth more money, although it's only worth more money if you finish at the right end of the field, of course. We go up there with hope, but knowing that he needs to rediscover his spark if he's to be competitive.
Chelmsford, 14:50 - Lady in Lights getting vital experience
By Dansili out of G3 Silver Flash Stakes winner Cabaret, she's beautifully bred, and we'll be doing our best to get a win with her, but I think that her chance will come in handicaps after she's gained a bit more experience.
Catterick, 15:00 - Hopeful that Morning Beauty stays the trip
Morning Beauty is a fast-ground filly and has looked to be crying out for the step up to this sort of trip, so I hope she stays, and her sire seems to produce horses who get a trip better than he did. She's drawn in the car park, but we're getting used to that, and she certainly seems in good heart. I declared her on quick ground, and I was hoping that Catterick would miss the rain, but we may not be so lucky.
Newmarket, 15:20 - Jousi ready to come back
She's had a lot of little niggles which have kept her off since October, but she's ready to come back to the track, and hopefully she can put her best foot forward. The pick of her work would see her competitive off her mark, but she is a little in and out, and she's not a big filly to be carrying top weight. I'm putting a hood on her to help her settle as there's been a bit of keenness in her before, and we'll see how we get on.
Ayr, 16:25 - Collide strong enough to handle condition
Collide is an exciting horse for the future, and very much one for next season. He didn't like the quick ground at Pontefract on debut, but has relished soft ground when winning his next two races in novice company at Hamilton and Carlisle. Handling soft ground isn't the same as handling heavy ground, but he's a big strong horse, and I'd be hopeful he could deal with conditions at Ayr. It looks a very competitive contest, but I hope one day that Collide will progress beyond handicaps, so have to be hopeful.