Yarmouth preview: Flying Hammer can nail hat-trick
Flying Hammer has a progressive profile, and can defy a rise in the weights to hit a hat-trick in the 1m 2f handicap on today’s card at Yarmouth (15.30).
The William Haggas trained colt shaped with bags of promise on his sole run as a juvenile when third at Newmarket, and showed the benefit of that experience when overcoming an absence of 278 days to make a winning return to action at Chepstow.
After travelling strongly on the heels of the leaders, Flying Hammer showed a nice turn of foot to put the race to bed when driven to take up the running inside the final furlong and win easily by 1 1/2 lengths.
There was lots to like about the way in which the three-year-old got the job done, and it was a performance which suggested the son of Acclamation needed keeping firmly onside.
That view was confirmed when Flying Hammer overcame trouble in-running to score on his handicap debut at Kempton three weeks ago off an opening mark of 79.
After tracking the leaders, jockey Pat Cosgrave found himself blocked behind a wall of horses two from home and had to switch Flying Hammer to the outside.
Once he did see daylight, Flying Hammer put together a fine sprint finish to get up close home and score be a short-head.
To me, he was value for much more than the winning margin, and a 6lb rise in the weights is unlikely to be enough to stop the unexposed and improving Flying Hammer going in again.
In the 6f handicap that closes proceedings (17.05), Felix Leiter can maintain his unbeaten record at the track.
The Karl Burke trained gelding opened his account over course and distance last July before going on to complete the hat-track.
In the last of those successes, the son of Monsieur Bond ran on strongly to score by 1/2 a length in a competitive 14-runner nursery at York off a mark of 81.
Felix Leiter got put up 6lb for that win, and failed to trouble the judge on his first four runs this season.
However, that resulted in the handicapper cutting him some slack and Felix Leiter duly put in a much improved effort last time out when second of 19 to George Dryden in a competitive class 3 contest at York off a rating of 82.
He is able to race in this lower grade class 4 affair off just 1lb higher, and that makes Felix Leiter look weighted to take all the beating.
15.00: Loving Things
15.30: Critical Risk
16.05: Flying Hammer (NAP)
17.05: Felix Leiter (NB)