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3:40 MORANDO 100/30

Before switching to Gary Moore, AGGGIO won twice in France. Since racing in the UK, the son of BORN TO SEA won 5 of 14 races. Of those, he collected 3 victories from 6 turf flat races. Connections placed him well to stay ahead of the handicapper, and he’s going to have a lenient mark when returned to hurdles.

However, back on the flat, he’s been raised another 2 pounds for a close 2nd to SECRET SHADOW. He was a beaten favourite that day, and I believe he got the run of the race. Suffice to say, with an increasing mark it’s going to get harder, albeit I respect his chance. 

I’m surprised to see the THEMAXWECAN running, this ground is wrong for the Mark Johnson runner and I would expect to finish at the back of the pack.

Because of unsuitable ground, Emma Lavelle decided to scratch MASTER MILLINER

After becoming badly handicapped over obstacles, it was decided to return EARL OF COTSWOLDS to the flat. Before disappointing at Ascot, Nigel Twiston-Davies 8 year old won three all-weather races and one of them was worth 77K to the winner. While connections should be applauded for taking the opportunity, that doesn’t mean they will win today. In fact, he’s up against it at these weights, especially since the ground became testing!

Now that he’s back on his favoured ground, this is a great chance for MORANDO to enter the winner’s enclosure. In his last race, Andrew Balding’s 9-year-old ran really well to finish 6/17 over an inadequate distance at Haydock. For the record, he’s two pounds lower today and Callum Hutchinson will take off another 5 pounds. I can’t imagine the extra distance being an issue, and the race should be run to suit. 

In summary, if Hutchinson does his bit, MORANDO should win this with a bit to spare. The grey gelding is a class act, and everything is spot on for a good run.