Ffos Las preview: Unison primed for repeat bid
Unison shaped as if returning to form last time out and looks weighted to land the 1m handicap on this evening’s card at Ffos Las (19.00) for the second year in succession.
The Peter Makin trained gelding was in good form last season when winning three times, including in this contest when scoring by 1/2 a length off a mark of 72.
Unison went on to round off the campaign with success in a 1m 2f handicap at Newmarket off 75, but failed to sparkle in his first three runs this season when well-beaten.
However, there was much more to like about the five-year-old’s latest run over 1m 2f at where he tracked the winner until fading late on to finish a 2 1/4 length fifth to Zambeasy.
It was a big step back in the right direction, and having since been dropped 2lb Unison is able to race off the same mark as when successful in his 12 months ago.
That gives the son of Jeremy major claims at the weights of retaining his crown, especially now dropped back down to his best trip of 1m.
Trainer William Knight has a fine record at the Welsh venue, and Artesena looks decent value to turn over the red-hot jolly Gioia Di Vita and further enhance it with victory in the 1m 4f handicap that closes the card (20.30).
The West Sussex-based handler has a strike rate of 60 per cent at the track in the past 12 months, saddling three winners from five runners.
In Artesana he has a filly who looks on a handy mark and has shown enough to win a race of this nature.
The three-year-old ran on strongly to finish a 1 1/2 length runner-up on her penultimate outing in a class 5 contest at Windsor, and was also far from disgraced last time out in a similar grade affair at Sandown when fifth of eight to Mythical Moment.
Although beaten eight lengths when staying on to be nearest at the finish in the latter, the winner and runner-up are both progressive sorts who have won since.
It gives the form a strong look in the context of this lower grade class 6 contest, in which Artesana is able to race off an unchanged mark of 62.
17.30: Zeb’s Fantasy
18.00: Mr Frankie
18.30: Dandys Perier
19.00: Unison (NAP)
19.30: Sir Billy Wright
20.00: Two Jabs
20.30: Artesana (NB)