WELCOME to our Eyecatchers column. Every week Alan Thomson pinpoints horses primed to strike in the next few weeks, if not days. Remember, you can add Alan's weekly updates to your ATR Tracker.
(Newmarket, 14 August)
Turned out quickly after making his debut seven days earlier at HQ (third), Tidal Wave will have learned plenty from his ding-dong battle with Bernie's Boy. Richard Hannon's Canford Cliffs colt was carried across the track before knuckling down to pip his errant rival close home. Tidal Wave himself edged off a true line close home but kept the race in the stewards' room. He looks one for the future and will stay further than this seven-furlong trip.
(Doncaster, 15 August)
Rookie trainer Henry Spiller, who cut his teeth in America under Saeed bin Suroor, has a nice filly on his hands in Combe Hay. Although no match through the final furlong for the duelling Engage and odds-on favourite Langlauf, newcomer Combe Hay travelled well for most of this mile trip and there is a race in her.
(Newbury, 15 August)
Having her third run in a fortnight, Pin Up put up a brave show in this amateur Ladies' Derby without threatening to catch mudlark Albert Bridge. Alyson Deniel found herself isolated on the far rail and although staying on quite doggedly, Pin Up couldn't engage a change of gear in the testing ground. Richard Fahey's three-year-old has finished out of the money only once in eight career starts and is progressing nicely.
(Ripon, 15 August)
Probably at his very best with plenty of cut underfoot and the ground may have dried out just sufficiently to compromise his chances in this competitive mile handicap won by Polar Forest. That said, Wilde Inspiration kept on stoutly in fourth and Julie Camacho's gelding usually peaks around this time of the year.
FIRST DREAM ATR Tracker
(Pontefract, 16 August)
Although only fourth of the six runners contesting this tight one-mile handicap won by Swift Emperor, consistent First Dream was doing some strong work in the closing stages having held a poor tactical position off a steady pace rounding the home bend. Roger Varian's three-year-old appreciated an extra furlong when beating Our Boy Jack at Epsom and isn't finished for the season just yet.
KYLACH ME IF U CAN
(Thirsk, 17 August)
Kevin Ryan's gelding has finished runner-up three times this summer following a 51-day break and he ran into an improving sort in Mr Cool Cash. It's hard to criticise Kylach Me If U Can's attitude and this 70 rating can still be exploited by his shrewd trainer.
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