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Catterick Preview: Spirit can land repeat success

| 05.08.2014

Course specialist Solar Spirit can take advantage of a lenient handicap mark to land the back-to-back successes in the 6f contest at Catterick today (4.15).

The Tracy Waggott trained gelding is a four-time winner at the venue, and the last of those successes came in this contest 12 months ago.

The nine-year-old won easing down by 3/4 of a length from Towbee off a mark of 75, and now gets into this year’s renewal off 2lb lower.

That gives Solar Spirit a big chance at the weights, and the son of Invincible Spirit is now actually running off his lowest rating in three years.

Solar Spirit has also run well on several occasions this season, and shown more than enough to suggest he can successfully defend his crown.

Trainer Barty Hills doesn’t send may raiders to the track, and that makes Gambol of obvious interest in the 1m 6f handicap (3.15).

The son of New Approach has shown improved form since going handicapping, coming with a late run to score over 1m 4f at Haydock before going down by just 1/2 a length to Meetings Man last time out at Sandown on his first try over today’s trip.

The way in which Gambol rallied in the latter suggested he was still far from the finished article and had more to offer, and in a race which should be run to suit the four-year-old looks decent value to beat the favourite Special Fighter.

In the 6f contest that closes the card (4.45), La Havrese looks weighted to take all the beating after an eye-catching run last time out on handicap debut.

The Anne Duffield trained filly shaped with promise in three maiden runs, most notably on her second start over 7f at Beverley when weakening inside the last to finish a 7 3/4 length fourth of nine to Crowley’s Law.

The winner has gone on to score twice since and is now rated 98, the runner-up Adore and third home Raymouti have also won.

That is strong form, and La Havrese looked potentially ahead of her handicap mark of 60 when staying on from off the pace to finish a length third over 6f at Carlisle 14 days ago.

The step up back to 7f this afternoon looks sure to suit, and with the yard going well, this looks a nice opportunity for La Havrese to open her account.

2.15: Berland
2.45: Prigsnov Dancer
3.15: Gambol
3.45: Incendo
4.15: Solar Spirit (NAP)
4.45: La Havrese (NB)



David Metcalf

A lifelong Manchester United supporter, David has over 25 years’ experience in the media industry having worked for regional and national newspapers. He is a huge horse racing, football and greyhound fan and has done interviews on various radio and TV stations, including talkSPORT and Sky Sports, whilst working as a PR front man for a betting firm. David has also written for most of the top Premier League football fan websites, and produced a Cheltenham Festival guide with former eight-times champion national hunt jockey Peter Scudamore, MBE, after helping him to set up a syndicate for his trainer son Michael.