ATHWAAB is a course and distance winner with a real chance at the weights; she gets the vote to beat Avow and Micky's Knock Off. Our selection was well held here last time but that was in a fiercely competitive handicap, so she's better judged on her consistent run of form prior to that. Perhaps she's a little flattered by a BHA rating of 74 but she has won a handicap off 69, indication enough that she'll go close under Ryan Moore. With Blue Neptune looking an out-and-out five furlong horse, best of the rest might be Stan Moore's Avow. He won a similar race on his penultimate start and six furlong looks the gelding's ideal trip whilst a big run off 66 here in January suggests he should be competitive. He gets the vote for second ahead of Micky's Knock Off who has a bit to find at the weights but the booking of Kieren Fallon is very interesting and he's been running well of late. Richard Guest's charge has a bit to find with Blue Neptune on their meeting last time but that was over five furlongs and this step up in trip can result in a reversal. Avonside wouldn't have to me anything special to go close on his debut and the market will tell us more, whilst Reach For The Sky shouldn't be totally ruled out at a price now returned to what looks her ideal trip and Ballyvonane should outrun his rating, although a win for him would represent a slight turn up. This is an average claimer and it provides a good chance for Athwaab to gain her third career success.
Avonside (IRE) Avonbridge gelding out of Loch Fyne.
Impressioniste (IRE) (9-2) 8th of 9, 18l behind Ucandri (9-2) at Angers(FR) 1m 2f stk gs in Oct.
Account Closed 80-1 (8-7) Always in rear, last of 8, 17l behind Neduardo (9-3) at Southwell 6f 3yo mdn stks (5) fbs.
Micky's Knock Off (IRE) 3-1 (8-10) Held up in touch, ridden to challenge 2f out, soon chasing leaders, kept on same pace final furlong, 5th of 8, 1 3/4l behind Blue Neptune (8-7) at Wolverhampton 5f 3yo clm stks (5) pol.
Athwaab 10-1 (8-5) Keen and raced wide, in touch, headway to lead over 3f out until over 2f out, weakened over 1f out, last of 9, 13l behind Jarrow (9-5) at Kempton 6f hcp 0-85 (4) pol.
Avow (USA) 10-1 (8-2) Chased leaders, weakened over 2f out, 7th of 8, 12l behind Lockantanks (8-11) at Lingfield 7f 3yo clm stks (6) pol.
Ballyvonane (USA) 15-8fav (8-7) Chased leaders, ridden halfway, kept on never dangerous, 4th of 8, 6l behind Silver Linnet (8-11) at Lingfield 5f 3yo hcp 0-65 (6) pol.
Blue Neptune 9-2 (9-1) Soon led, ridden 2f out, headed and no extra inside final furlong, 2nd of 8, 2 1/2l behind Flaxen Lake (8-12) at Wolverhampton 5f 3yo sell stks (6) pol.
Reach For The Sky (IRE) 9-1 (8-6) In touch, ridden 2f out, weakened 1f out, 6th of 8, 5l behind Flaxen Lake (8-12) at Wolverhampton 5f 3yo sell stks (6) pol.