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Ayr and Wolverhampton previews: Gworn primed for repeat success

| 08.08.2016

David Metcalf | August 8, 2016

Gworn the ace in the pack at Ayr

Gworn looks decent value to take advantage of a drop in the weights and land back-to-back successes in the 1m 2f handicap on today’s card at Ayr (16.30).

The Michael Smith trained gelding was last successful in this contest 12 months ago when staying on strongly to Mica Mika by a short-head off a mark of 81.

Gworn went on to finish runner-up over course and distance off 84 and has also posted some solid efforts at the track this season to make the frame.

The five-year-old also now steps back up in trip to 1m 2f having found 1m too short on his last two outings and has been eased a further 1lb in the weights.

Gworn is now able to race off a rating of 79, 2lb lower than when last victorious, and also has the services of promising apprentice Garry Whillans in the saddle who takes off another 5lb with his claim.

It makes the son Aussie Rules look weighted to take all the beating on the pick of his form at a track where he has won once and been placed three times from six starts over this afternoon’s trip.


Class-dropping Be Bold weighted to get back on track

In the 6f handicap (15.30), Be Bold can cash-in on a drop in the weights and ease in grade to get back to winning ways.

The gelding was last successful in a class 5 handicap at Newbury 12 months ago for trainer Richard Hannon when scoring by a head off a rating of 70.

Be Bold went on to round off the campaign with a solid 3/4 length second in a class 4 contest at Windsor off 77 but has failed to trouble the judge in five starts this season since joining Rebecca Bastiman.

However, the four-year-old hinted at a return to form last time out over 7f at this venue when a keeping on 2 3/4 length fifth to Vallarta and now meets that rival on 4lb better terms.

Be Bold has also been eased another 2lb to a mark of 70 and now drops back down to his ideal trip of 6f.

It gives the four-year-old major claims from a handicapping perspective, especially now dropped down into class 5 company having competed in more competitive class 4 contests all season.

Ayr selections

14.00: Honourable
14.30: Indego Blues
15.00: Jay Kay
15.30: Be Bold (NB)
16.00: Blue Sonic
16.30: Gworn (NAP)
17.00: Intensified
17.35: Miningrocks

Thoughts has a Great chance at Wolverhampton

Great Thoughts caught the eye last time out and looks to hold leading claims of opening her account in the 1m 4f handicap on today’s card at Wolverhampton (15.45).

The David Simcock trained three-year-old has shaped with plenty of promise in three outings this season, most notably when third to Fashion Parade over 1m 3f at Windsor three weeks ago.

After dwelling at the start Great Thoughts stayed on strongly to be nearest at the finish and beaten 2 3/4 lengths.

It was an effort which suggested the daughter of Iffraaj would appreciate a step back up in trip and the winner is a progressive sort who was ideally positioned in a slow run race.

A stronger gallop is likely to see Great Thoughts in a far better light and off an unchanged mark of 72 she looks nicely treated and can make the most of the 14lbs she receives from top weight Falcon Song to land the spoils.

Royal Ascot day 4

Course specialist Berlusca can get back to winning ways

Berlusca has a tremendous record at the track and can further enhance it with victory in the 1m handicap (16.15).

The David O’Meara trained gelding is a seven-time winner at the venue and shaped far better than the bare result suggests last time out over course and distance when a 2 3/4 length sixth to Izlam.

After being held-up at the rear in a slow run affair Berlsuca made good headway a furlong from home and kept on to be nearest at the finish without being unduly knocked about.

It was an excellent effort given how the race panned out and the seven-year-old now meets the winner on 3lb better terms.

That may well be enough to turn the tables, especially if Berlusca is ridden closer to the pace and not given too much to do in what could once again turn into a tactical affair.

Wolverhampton selections

14.15: Golden Easter
14.45: Little Nosegay
15.15: Storm Over
15.45: Great Thoughts (NAP)
16.15: Berlusca (NB)
16.45: Colourfilly
17.15: Bahamian Boy


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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.