A Maiden Fillies' Stakes for horses aged three-year-old plus over 1m 141y on Standard going.
Seven fillies take part: five with race experience, two debutantes.
A couple of four-year-olds have to carry an age penalty and shoulder an extra 21lb. A stiff task.
Penny Poet is trained by Neil Mulholland. This bay filly is a daughter of Intikhab in the ownership of The Boot Inn Partnership. Originally purchased at the yearling sales for 70,000G, she was bought by her present trainer for the paltry sum of £1,500 at three. Clearly, aspirations for this filly dwindled in that period of time. This March foal started her career at four in January when odds of 100-1. She showed limited ability. A similar performance was shown second start. She needs to find substantial improvement to figure and better suited to handicaps.
A four-year-old with greater hope is Sea Dweller. This daughter of Highchaparral is trained by Anthony Carson. This bay filly raced twice in December, finishing runner-up on both starts. She was bought well at the yearling sales by W Carson for 10,000G. Sea Dweller was fancied to go well in the betting last time out when batting hard to lose to the favourite by half-length, eased close home. An absence of some fifty-four days has to be overcome but a determined horse who should put down a challenge.
Brian Barr, who in my opinion is more associated with the National Hunt, fields Toolatetofelegate. This daughter of Delegator is out of an unraced mare and purchased by the vendor for 4,000G at the yearling sales. Looks unlikely.
Persistence was well backed on debut, finishing fourth, not helped by a slow start but kept on nicely in the closing stages and given an ''improver'' tag by the race reader. This Irish-bred daughter of Invincible Spirit is out of a Galileo mare who didn't make the track. She races in the ownership of the Duke Of Roxburghe & James Wigan. This bay filly showed promise on debut. The starting price suggests this three-year-old has been going well on the gallops. Persistence will improve a good deal for that first start and a major contender.
Once-raced Flood Warning is trained by Clive Cox for Cheveley Park Stud. This owner/trainer combination has been successful. This chestnut filly is sired by Pivotal out of a winning mare who was originally trained by John Dunlop. Flood Warning was purchased at the yearling sales for 130,000G. Interesting to note this horse was in a significant betting guide for Cox on debut at Lingfield. Things didn't go to plan. This February foal was restless in the stalls, fly jumped leaving the stalls, took keen hold, ran green, not clear run, staying on well final furlong but never troubled leaders.You don't need to be Columbo to understand this filly could go better today.
The only debutante with any meaningful chance is Shankara, trained by David Simcock. He is an exceptional handler who can strike with debutantes. This grey filly is a daughter of Mastercraftsman out of a twice-winning mare who plied her trade in Ireland. She was purchased at two for 52,000G by Blandford Bloodstock. The Never Say Die silks may be familiar to readers as these owners tasted victory with Sincil Bank & Alcazar. Josephine Gorden has formed a great partnership with Simcock. The betting is the best guide. If priced 13/2 & less SP has each-way claims.
Navajo Star was made 66-1 on debut for Michael Appleby. Not an enthralling first start and I wouldn't be holding my breath for a win today.
Conclusion: The betting suggests this is a four-horse race. It doesn't help each-way bettors with just seven runners. Sea Dweller is a determined horse. The age penalty for these four-year-olds is a burden and whether she can shoulder 21lb is a matter for debate. Both Flood Warning and Persistence are interesting. Neither had much go right on debut but definitely showed promise and may well shine on their respective second starts. If they have the ability, it will take a smart performance from Sea Dweller. Shankara is worthy of respect for Simcock. The stable can ready a debutante. On balance, I would take a watching brief.
NR - Persistence