Leicester preview: Everything looks right for Starboard
Starboard will appreciate the cut in the ground at Leicester, and with the in-form Jamie Spencer in the saddle can get back to winning ways in the 1m handicap on today’s eight-race card (15.40).
The gelding had some smart form to his name as a three-year-old, including when winning a Group 3 contest at Longchamp by three lengths off an official rating of 104.
Since then the six-year-old has spent several lengthy spells on the sidelines and has clearly not been the easiest to train.
However, Starboard showed that he still retained plenty of ability when bolting up on soft ground at Chepstow on his penultimate outing.
The son of Zamindar, who is now in the care of David Simcock, travelled strongly throughout before shooting clear two from home to beat Peak Strom by 3 3/4 lengths off a mark of 88.
Starboard got put up 7lb for that victory, but was far from disgraced off his revised mark of 95 when fifth of 13 to Bronze Angel in a competitive affair at Doncaster on good ground.
The return to an easier surface is sure to suit, and Starboard remains well-treated on the pick of his form.
In the 6f handicap (16.10), Don’t Have It Then looks weighted to take all the beating if building on his latest effort.
The Willie Musson trained gelding is a four-time winner, with the last of those successes coming on the all-weather at Kempton back in December off a mark of 75.
Don’t Have It Then went on to finish a solid third at Lingfield off 79, and is now able to race in this off just 66 after putting a string of disappointing efforts behind him when an eye-catching fourth of 12 in a class 4 contest at Newmarket last time out.
After being held-up, the four-year-old encountered trouble in-running before staying on strongly to be beaten just a length.
To my mind Don’t Have It Then would have won granted a clear passage, and off an unchanged mark he son of Myboycharlie looks to have plenty going for him in this lower grade class 5 affair.
14.10: Light Music
15.40: Starboard (NAP)
16.10: Dont Have It Then (NB)
16.40: Agent Gibbs
17.10: Hold Tight
17.40: Cockle Town Boy