19:05 - Vent De Force
Official ratings tell you that Big Orange and Quest For More are the two to beat in here - though the latter has a 7lb penalty for Group 1 win in the Cadran - and Elidor did well to win at Nottingham last time. So I am up against it on Vent De Force on his first start for getting on for a year, and after a pretty lack-lustre 2016 for him, too. But he won this race in 2015 when beating Trip To Paris on fast ground, so if he comes back to that level of form then he has chances. But Big Orange looks the obvious one to beat at these weights.
19:35 - Autocratic
This looks a competitive Brigadier Gerard, and there are a few in here that I have a fair bit of time for, including the likes of Chain Of Daisies. But So Mi Dar brings Group 1 form to the table, and she looks the worthy favourite at these weights. We were obviously very disappointed with Autocratic's comeback behind Steel Of Madrid in the Earl Of Sefton, as he had been going nicely at home going into the race. We know he is a lot better than that and that he was a progressive horse last season when he won over course and distance on fast ground. I would hope and expect a better showing here but official marks tell you how much he has to improve to be winning this, let alone to be placed. He remains a good prospect, though.
20:10 - Khafoo Shememi
This looks a tight-knit Listed race and you can make a case for all six. My mount probably has most to find form-wise along with the bottom horse, especially after he ran below par at Ascot last time, for all that was a very decent 7f handicap. He had earlier won over 1m at Kempton, so hopefully stepping back up in trip will suit, and he has course form and has won on fast ground. But he needs to improve to win this.
20:40 - Makzeem
He looks to have made a satisfactory return when second at Wolverhampton earlier in the month. He actually chased home Autocratic in a maiden over 1m2f here last June and has form at this trip, too. He has chances in an open race, and hopefully the first-time cheekpieces will help him as well.