6.10 Kempton – COPAL (nap)
This looks a potentially informative novice event, with a few of these that went close on this surface on debut/last-time-out facing a once-raced pair capable of better than they showed first time out and an interesting newcomer.
The selection, trained by Ralph Beckett, is a son of Dark Angel who made his debut outing in a 7f novice contest at Salisbury 19 days ago (well-supported 4/1 chance), slowly away and racing towards the rear of the field, pulled out wide and shaken up passing the three furlong marker, keeping on well inside the final furlong to come home in sixth behind Senza Limiti (beaten 8½ lengths). This colt’s finishing effort suggested there would be much better to come, taking a while to find top stride but closing up strongly on the principals come the finish without being subjected to anything more than hands-and-heels riding. The strength behind him in the market beforehand on that occasion is also noteworthy, his handler hardly averse to starting off an above-average sort at Salisbury, while his pedigree is another recommendation (smart half brother Monarch’s Glen was an easy winner on his only visit to this venue). The yard’s youngsters can also improve plenty for a run and, entitled to be sharper for that initial experience, it wouldn’t at all surprise to see this son of Dark Angel come good at the second time of asking here.
The Saeed Bin Suroor-trained Blue Mountain is a son of Dansili who was collared late by the more-experienced Indomitable in a 7.5f novice event at Chester on debut last month, but he could only manage third when 6/5 market leader for a 1m novice contest here at the beginning of this month, tracking the leaders and travelling well to the two furlong marker but his response off the bridle rather limited (beaten 2½ lengths). It was disappointing how little this colt found last time given how smoothly he travelled into things entering the final two furlongs, the additional half a furlong he faced on that occasion unlikely to have been the sole reason (bred to stay 1m at least). He is stepped back a furlong in distance here, travelling well enough last time to think he would cope fine with the drop in distance; sets the standard, but it’s not an insurmountable one and no surprise to see something improve past him.
Clive Cox’s Private Rocket is a son of Dark Angel who stepped up on his debut showing when contesting a 6f novice event here a fortnight ago (well-backed 3/1 favourite), racing in midfield and nudged along from halfway, ridden over two furlongs out and staying on well inside the final 150 yards to take third close home behind Intuitive (beaten 2½ lengths). It was a much-improved showing from this colt having disappointed when well fancied on debut, showing the benefit for that initial outing and the break he’d had previous to that reappearance run. That probably wasn’t an overly-strong event, but he remains open to improvement, especially for this step up to seven furlongs; all in all, it would be rather surprising were this son of Dark Angel not on the premises come the finish.
The Sir Michael Stoute-trained London Eye is a well-bred son of Australia who debuted in a 7f novice event at Newbury a month ago (easy-to-back 6/1 chance), settled back into midfield and shaken up two furlongs out, making progress to look a threat approaching the final furlong but unable to sustain his challenge inside the final furlong, fading to eventually finish ninth of 14 to Politicise (beaten 9 lengths). That looked a substandard affair by course standards (form taken a few knocks already), but this colt shaped like one of the better long-term prospects in the field, travelling nicely onto the heels of the leaders over a furlong out but appearing to be found out by the rain-softened conditions. He is entitled to strip much fitter for that initial outing and ought to be suited by this sounder surface, a half brother to a couple of smart AW performers in the US; ought to prove a lot more competitive now.
The Archie Watson-trained Times Past is a son of Dandy Man who made his debut in a 1m novice contest here three weeks ago (6/1 chance), tracking the leaders and shaken up over two furlongs out, attempting to challenge over a furlong out but soon left behind by Ours Puissant, coming home 7 lengths adrift of that rival at the line. It was a perfectly satisfactory debut effort from this colt, absolutely no match for the winner and only just holding on for second, suggesting this step back in distance is perhaps a sensible decision (pedigree not short of speed). Quite how strong a race that was remains to be seen, the third soundly held next time and the level of form shown by those with prior experience nothing out of the ordinary; respected given yard but one or two others appeal more.
Jeremy Noseda’s No Trouble is a son of No Nay Never who debuted in a 7f maiden at Newmarket last month (12/1 chance), breaking on terms but soon struggling to hold his position, ridden along before halfway and losing further ground, eased off from the two furlong marker and coming home in his own time (beaten 38 lengths). This colt showed nothing on debut, though the manner in which he dropped through the field and was subsequently eased down suggests all may not have been well that day; market sure to point the way as to what’s expected this time.
The most interesting newcomer in the field is the Roger Varian-trained Bayroot, a son of Exceed And Excel who is the third foal of an unraced half sister to Group 1-placed 7-10f winner (including at Group 2/3 level) Kabool, smart UK/UAE 9-14f winner (including at Listed level) Sharaf Kabeer, useful 8-10f winner Hawaass, four other winners and to the dam of South African 8/10f Group 1 winner Europa Point and 6f 2yo Group 2 winner Harbour Watch. This colt makes a fair amount of appeal on pedigree, his unraced dam’s first two foals maidens but herself related to some smart performers; should be well suited by this trip/surface and no surprise to see him involved in some capacity.