The Investec Mile Handicap raced on Oaks day has a wide-open look with the betting starting at prices of 7/1 currently.
Hors De Combat ran a blinder on his reappearance run back in the UK and could run a big race for each-way punters once again at a nice price. There could also be solid arguments made for going in on ultra-consistent handicapping yardsticks such as Firmament and Masham Star who line up in this as well.
Perhaps one of the more interesting runners is Nicklaus for the Highclere Thoroughbred racing syndicate. However, he might be a horse that could carry a bit of condition on his seasonal opener and it may be worth just watching him today. Hortzadar is arguably the most unexposed in this and can do better than his previous start having not had much luck-in-running in his attempt to claim a hatrick. The handicapper has slapped him with a huge 15lbs rise since joining David O’Meara though and Hortzadar will need to improve again to win this.
So with the forecast fast-ground and likely strong gallop, it might be worth keeping our attention focused on horses towards the top of the handicap. I can’t help but think that SENIORITY will be backed in off the boards on Friday for this with plenty of followers of the Queens horses and champion jockey Ryan Moore set to be in the saddle.
It’s always worth noting when Ryan Moore takes the ride for a Royal runner and Seniority isn’t just a hype horse, he has excellent credentials to pick up a handicap race of this nature.
Admittedly, he will have to defy a career-high winning handicap mark, but Seniority loves fast ground and goes well fresh. His two runs in Meydan were not atrocious and the form of those races has been fairly solid. So all points to a big run on his first start of the season back in England and off a mark just 3lbs higher than his most recent win, he looks dangerous at the top of the weights.
At the time of writing, there was 9/1 on offer with William Hill (non-runner money back) for Seniority and that could be massive come Friday afternoon, so is a price worth taking now.
I also can’t resist a bet on Henry Candy’s runner in the shape of eight-year-old, GREENSIDE, who has looked bang in-form on both of his two starts this season. A horse that has had many fitness challenges down the years, Greenside had slipped to a rather generous looking mark of 90 when going off under a huge gamble in the Spring Cup at Newbury back in April.
Greenside finished ahead of the reopposing History Writer in 4/26 on that occasion – who now faces him on 4lb better terms – despite getting hampered and he can confirm the form with his opponent. Greenside then went off a strongly-fancied favourite at Windsor over a mile, winning a shade cosily as he crossed the line ahead of Masham Star a month ago.
Greenside is now 4lbs higher for this, but it’s encouraging that he has been successful off this mark of 94 earlier in his career and with three of his five wins on turf coming on fast ground he seems to have a lot in his favour.
Couple that with the fact that Greenside generally finishes off his races strongly and with the stiff finish to contend with over the extended mile here at Epsom, he could be well-suited by the race conditions.
1pt win Greenside @8/1, 14:35 Epsom, Friday (with various bookmakers)
1pt win Seniority @9/1, 14:35 Epsom, Friday (with William Hill NRMB)