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.
IMPERIAL CUP HERO IS FLYING OVER FENCES
A very wide pitch in stall 14 effectively scuppered his bid to complete a fairly quick all-weather three-timer but German Whip ran with great credit in third.
Gary Moore has his team in tremendous form under both codes and German Whip is capable of picking up the winning thread when the draw is kinder.
Returning from a 54-day break, Le Deluge proved no match for well-treated favourite Niblawi but Micky Hammond’s six-year-old was trapped on the rail for fully two furlongs before belatedly finding racing room in the last 100 yards.
Le Deluge has winning form on synthetic surfaces and that may be the way to go when he is unable to find his favoured quick ground on turf.
The clear-cut winner of last season’s Imperial Cup, Flying Angel passed his first test over fences with flying colours.
At no stage did Sam Twiston-Davies appear flustered as Rejaah set a hot pace and Flying Angel picked off the pacesetter with ease early in the straight.
Flying Angel, runner-up in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at Cheltenham, jumped like an old hand and is an exciting prospect.
Raced prominently on the favoured stands’ side in the Betfred Cambridgeshire and looked sure to take a hand two out until gradually fading into tenth spot.
This was his second run back from a 108-day absence and Ed Vaughan may consider stepping him back up to 10 furlongs, a distance he scored over at Newmarket off a 6lb lower mark in May.
Failing that, Interconnection might be worth a dabble on the all-weather this winter.
Not cut much ice in five starts for Lucy Wadham but there was a glimmer of promise to be gleaned from her third place behind Flower Of Love and Casablanca in this extended 10-furlong maiden.
The first two went head-to-head from early in the straight and left Courtsider behind.
There was a yawning gap back to the others and if the handicapper drops her to a mark of 60 in future (ran off 64 here) Courtsider could pick up a small handicap.
Gone two years without recording a victory but the 2014 Northumberland Plate winner is slowly but surely easing to an attractive mark.
Despite giving Sophie Killoran some problems by pulling hard out wide, Richard Fahey’s gelding stayed on bravely up the straight to take third place behind all-the-way winner Faithful Mount.
Angel Gabrial has only recently returned from a nice break and he ran well at this time last year, chasing home Flying Officer in a two-mile Listed race at Newmarket off 104.
Now down to 98, the seven-year-old could be ready to make up for lost time.
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