ALRASM ran a blinder to be second on his seasonal reappearance and should go one better here at the expense of Maxim Gorky, Averroes and Mister Angry. Michael Jarvis' gelding did really well over shorter as a juvenile but is bred to leave that behind when sent over a mile and beyond, so it was no surprise to see him take second at Leicester last time. That was over 1m2f on soft ground and he fought back when headed that day to suggest 1m4f here won't pose a problem, despite the fact he's probably bred to be more at home over ever so slightly shorter. Interestingly the winner that day has since gone close in Listed company which enhances confidence in our selection, who is taken to beat the unexposed Maxim Gorky, himself a winner at Leicester on the same day. Interestingly on official times there's nothing between this one and our pick and yet Sir Michael Stoute's horse is rated 13lbs inferior, however we're not convinced that paints the complete picture and his lack of experience is a concern here. Averroes ran in a hot race behind one of Sir Michael's last time so has to be considered off just 2lbs higher, especially as Clive Cox thinks plenty of him, and he makes more appeal than Mister Angry although Mark Johnston's charge would be a threat to all if allowed to dictate at his own pace. Mark Twain caught the eye at Newmarket last time, shaping as though this step up in trip would suit, so he's another to consider in a handicap that looks sure to throw up plenty of future winners. Our hope is that today's winner is Alrasm.
Alrasm (IRE) 2-1fav (9-7) Pulled hard, led after 1f, set steady pace, ridden and effort over 1f out, headed inside final furlong, ran on, 2nd of 7, nk behind Miss Starlight (8-9) at Leicester 1m 2f 3yo hcp 0-95 (3) sft in Apr.
Mark Twain (IRE) 100-1 (9-3) Raced centre, held up in rear, headway on outside over 1f out, stayed on inside final furlong, never nearer, 7th of 16, 9l behind Coordinated Cut (9-3) at Newmarket 1m 2f 3yo aut stk (2) gd in Apr.
Averroes (IRE) 11-1 (8-10) Soon led, headed over 8f out, remained prominent, challenged 3f out, led 2f out, soon ridden, headed inside final furlong, unable to quicken, 3rd of 14, 1l behind Verdant (8-12) at Sandown 1m 2f 3yo hcp 0-90 (3) gd in Apr.
Mister Angry (IRE) 4-1 (9-10) Led, joined 7f out, ridden over 2f out, headed over 1f out, one pace and lost 2nd inside final furlong, 3rd of 5, 3l behind Gomrath (9-4) at Catterick 1m 4f con stks (3) gf in Apr.
Maxim Gorky (IRE) 5-4fav (8-8) Keen, close up, tracked leader 6f out, ridden to lead over 1f out, kept up to work final furlong, won at Leicester 1m 2f mdn stks (5) sft in Apr beating Tropical Blue (9-13) by 2 3/4l, 4 ran.
Ipswich Lad 5-1 (8-7) Led after 2f, headed 8f out, led again over 4f out, soon 3 lengths clear, unchallenged after, won at Kempton 1m 4f mdn auc stks (6) pol in Apr beating Ebony Boom (8-7) by 3 1/2l, 14 ran.
Sharaayeen 11-4 (9-0) Tracked leaders, ridden to challenge over 1f out, soon under pressure, kept on same pace, 2nd of 5, 1 3/4l behind Exemplary (9-2) at Leicester 1m 4f 3yo hcp 0-95 (3) gf in Apr.
Sheila Toss (IRE) 25-1 (9-0) Held up towards rear, effort on outside and pushed along over 2f out, soon one pace, 5th of 10, 10l behind Gertrude Bell (9-0) at Newbury 1m 2f 3yo fll mdn (4) gd in Apr.