WELCOME to our Eyecatchers column. Every Tuesday form expert 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.
THIRD TIME LUCKY CAN POP UP AT A BIG PRICE THIS SEASON
(Infinity Tyres Handicap)
This dry spell isn’t what connections of Quick Look wanted on the Knavesmire as their sprinter much prefers it when the mud is flying.
A sloppy break put paid to any conceivable chance and Quick Look could never get into the picture from his exposed pitch in stall two.
Mick Easterby’s gelding stayed on into 11th behind runaway winner George Bowen and he remains well enough handicapped, despite ending last season on a high, scoring at Nottingham and Catterick on soft.
(Oaks Farm Stables Handicap)
Remains a maiden after nine attempts and, realistically, he was always playing for places in this traditionally hot middle-distance handicap.
Doctor Cross, having his first try at this longer trip, stayed on into sixth under Paul Hanagan and his earlier third at Haydock (soft) behind Stonific, a subsequent Thirsk scorer, was another fair effort.
(Langley Solicitors British EBF Marygate Fillies’ Stakes)
William Haggas’s filly wasn’t particularly fancied in the betting to follow up her Yarmouth debut success in April and she looked just a little out of her depth behind Royal Ascot-bound Signora Cabello.
Carrie’s Vision was impeded slightly leaving the gate from her high draw and Ryan Moore chopped and changed position several times in an attempt to find some racing room.
He eventually accepted the inevitable and wasn’t hard on Carrie’s Vision.
(Equinity Technology Handicap)
Showed promise last season for Dermot Weld at a time when that yard was under a cloud and Titus is a very decent recruit to Declan Carroll’s stable.
The four-year-old seemed to enjoy the easier ground when beating hotpot Saroog at Wetherby 13 days earlier (third horse has since won easily) and may have found the quicker surface slightly against him as Thundering Home was pushed clear of Banditry in this competitive 1m 2f contest.
Titus travelled strongly under 5lb claimer Ger O’Neill and momentarily looked the winner when hitting the front just over a furlong out.
Sitting just off a strong gallop for a late thrust could be the tactics employed to land a nice pot this season.
THIRD TIME LUCKY
(Betfred TV Hambleton Handicap)
Back down to a mark which saw him lift the 2015 Cambridgeshire Handicap, Third Time Lucky could pop up at a big price somewhere this season.
The gelding has never been at his best on lively ground and was always playing catch-up here, failing to find cover from his wide draw.
Paul Hanagan delivered his challenge from an exposed position on the stands’ side and Third Time Lucky was soon readily outpaced, finishing seventh to Afaak.
He had run much better 12 days earlier at Newmarket with some ease underfoot, running third to gambled-on Oasis Charm, and is no back-number.
(Investec Wealth Handicap)
Finished a neck runner-up off an 8lb lower mark in this two-mile test last year and could be considered slightly unlucky not to go one better.
Danny Tudhope found himself with quite a bit to do down the straight, with the leaders not stopping on the fast ground.
Graceland finished stoutly into fourth behind game winner Waiting For Richie and another tilt at the Northumberland Vase at Newcastle in midsummer (beaten a neck last year) could be on the cards for Michael Bell’s consistent mare.