Epsom preview: Mud-loving Parade ready to rule
Regal Parade will relish the testing conditions at Epsom and looks weighted to gain a deserved success in the 6f handicap on today’s card (15.05).
The 11-year-old has been a grand servant over the years, winning 13 of his 85 races and finishing in the frame on 23 occasions.
Now in the care of Charlie Wallis, the gelding is back down the the same mark as when running on strongly to land a 6f contest on soft ground at Newmarket 13 months ago.
The veteran also comes into the contest on the back of a series of solid efforts which have seen him hit the frame in six of his last seven runs.
They include a nose second to Muir Lodge at Newmarket, and Regal Parade now meets that rival on 1lb better terms.
That should be enough for Regal Parade to gain his revenge, especially as the son of Pivotal now gets the soft ground that he relishes for the first time this season.
In the 7f handicap (15.35), Ixelles Diamond look to have everything in her favour to land back-to-back runnings of the contest.
The Richard Fahey trained filly turned the race into a procession 12 months ago, travelling strongly throughout before storming clear to win by seven lengths on soft ground.
Ixelles Diamond is now able to race in this year’s renewal off just 2lb higher, and that gives her outstanding claims at the weights.
Although disappointing last time out over 1m at Sandown, the daughter of Diamond Queen raced far too freely over a trip which is far from ideal.
Prior to that Ixelles Diamond had posted several solid efforts, including a short-head second over course and distance and a good third at Ayr on soft ground off her current mark of 70.
Those runs suggest that Ixelles Diamond is in top form, and with this afternoon’s trip and ground ideal she is going to be hard to beat.
14.00: Zahrat Narjis
14.30: Nice Future
15.05: Regal Parade (NAP)
15.35: Ixelles Diamond (NB)
16.40: Cahala Dancer