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Epsom Preview: Fire Fighting too hot to handle

Fire Fighting has been in good form on the all-weather and looks capable of defying topweight to land the 1m 2f handicap at Epsom today (15.55).

Trained by Mark Johnston, the gelding is a tough and consistent sort who has won five of his 22 starts of the turf and been placed on six occasions.

The four-year-old comes into the contest with no fitness worries having already had four starts this season, running well to finish in the frame three times.

Fire Fighting looked a bit unlucky last time out when travelling well but conceding first run before finishing strongly to go down by a neck over 1m 4f at Lingfield, and although now 2lb higher in the weights his current mark of 104 should not be beyond him.

The son of Soldier Of Fortune finished an excellent second to Grendisar in a Listed contest at Kempton off 2lb higher, and has a 25 per cent strike rate over today’s trip (two wins from eights starts).

Another plus is that Fire Fighting won on his sole previous visit to the track, and with Joe Fanning in the saddle everything looks in place for a huge run.

In the 5f handicap that opens proceedings (14.10), Fair Value is on a handy mark and looks decent each-way value at a track she runs well.

The five-year-old is a course and distance winner, and posted a solid effort in this contest 12 months ago when third to Caspian Prince.

Fair Value is now able to race off 5lb lower, and is just 1lb higher than when last successful at Kempton three starts back.

The Simon Dow-trained mare has since had two spins on the all-weather after a 67 day break, and looks to have been primed with this race in mind.

Christophermarlowe looked an exciting prospect when winning his two starts as a juvenile, and the John Gosden-trained colt can maintain his unbeaten record in the Investec Derby Trial (15.20).

The three-year-old showed a smart turn of foot to land a 1m 1f contest at the track when last seen in action, and the step up to 1m 2f this afternoon should hold no fears.

With the stable in good form, Christophermarlowe can get the better of main market rival Future Empire to land the spoils before going on to better things.

Selections:
14.10: Fair Value (NB)
14.45: Lungarno Palace
15.20: Christophermarlowe
15.55: Fire Fighting (NAP)
16.30: Mezajy
17.05: American Artist