always prominent, led after 2f, ridden clear over 1f out, ran on well
held up, headway over 2f out, chased winner over 1f out, never able to challenge
keen, tracked leaders, driven to challenge over 2f out, weakened over 1f out
led 2f, every chance over 1f out, kept on same pace final furlong
chased leaders, lost place over 2f out
behind, headway when not clear run over 2f out, switched right to challenge, weakened final furlong
held up in rear, headway over 1f out, ran on into 3rd inside final furlong, nearest finish
broke well soon steadied and in touch, effort over 2f out, faded final furlong
David O'Meara runs two course and distance winners. The veteran SO BELOVED is on a long losing run but was only beaten a short-head in this last year when 3lb higher and ran very well in a similar class handicap at Haydock last time. Stable companion Salateen is a ten-times winner and an excellent handicapper on his day so there shouldn't be much between them. Cardsharp is a Listed winner and generally consistent at this sort of level though he was well beaten in the Victoria Cup last time. Dancing Star was beaten 2l by the latter at Salisbury last June though that was over 6f and he's much better over today's trip. He's also 4lb better off so could take revenge.
Cardsharp 33-1 (9-8) Always towards rear, 21st of 26, 11 1/2l behind Cape Byron (9-3) at Ascot 7f hcp (2) gs in May.
So Beloved 16-1 (9-10) Held up, driven to chase leaders over 1f out, ridden final furlong, no extra, 4th of 14, 3 1/4l behind Safe Voyage (9-8) at Haydock 7f hcp (2) sft in Apr.
Dancing Star 10-1 (9-7) Anticipated start and hit front of gates not open properly, very slowly away, recovered to rear halfway, pushed along over 2f out, soon weakened and eased, last of 8, 17 3/4l behind Pretty Baby (9-4) at Lingfield 7f Grp 3 fll stks (1) sft in May.
Salateen 33-1 (9-5) Led early, pressed leader, led over 1f out, headed inside final furlong, lost 3rd post, 4th of 11, 3 1/4l behind Oh This Is Us (9-5) at Lingfield 1m stks (2) pol in Apr.
Via Serendipity 40-1 (8-12) Chased leaders, weakened quickly inside final 2f, soon behind, tailed off and eased, 25th of 26, 28 1/4l behind Cape Byron (9-3) at Ascot 7f hcp (2) gs in May.
Polybius 7-2 (9-7) Held up in touch, pushed along over 1f out, one pace final furlong, last of 5, 3 3/4l behind Sanaadh (9-0) at Newcastle 7f hcp (2) pol in Dec.
Zap 33-1 (8-10) Chased leaders, ridden and weakened inside final furlong, 14th of 26, 7 1/2l behind Cape Byron (9-3) at Ascot 7f hcp (2) gs in May.
Normandy Barriere (IRE) 11-1 (9-1) Held up towards rear, kept on final furlong, no threat, 5th of 9, 4 1/2l behind Embour (8-10) at Newbury 6f hcp (2) gd in May.