Lingfield Preview: Understory handicapped to strike
Understory can take advantage of a drop in the weights to land the 1m 2f handicap at Lingfield today (3.40) now refitted with the blinkers.
The Tim McCarthy trained gelding is a three-time winner over course and distance, with the last of those successes coming in May 2013 off a mark of 68 in a class 5 contest.
The nine-year-old has since run well to be placed on several occasions, and is now able to race in this class 6 affair off just 57.
That is a career-low and 11lb lower than when Understory was last victorious in a higher grade.
It gives the veteran a huge shout at the weights, and Understory comes into the contest on the back of two solid efforts which suggest he is ready to cash-in on his plummeting mark.
Connections are also now refitting Understory with the blinkers which he wore when last victorious, and the booking of George Baker to do the steering is another positive.
Daring Indian caught the eye last time out and looks a major player now stepped up in trip in the 2m handicap (4.10).
The gelding won twice when trained by Tom Dascombe, with his last success coming over 1m 6f in a class 4 handicap at Haydock off a mark of 74.
Now in the care of Graeme McPherson, the seven-year-old is now able to race in this class 5 affair off 7lb lower having shaped really well after a lay-off last time out at Lingfield when a staying on 2 3/4 length fifth to the progressive Steve Rogers after being slowly away.
That was Daring Indian’s first run for 212 days and should have blow away the cobwebs, and the way he finished off suggests a step up to 2m this afternoon will suit.
In the 1m 2f contest that closes proceedings (4.40), Giovanni Di Bicci is a fascinating contender on handicap debut.
The Lady Cecil trained gelding failed to trouble the judge in three starts last year, but hinted at ability over trips of 7f and a mile looks the type to improve now stepped up in trip.
The fact that he had three quicks runs in September/October before being given a break also suggests that Giovanni Di Bicci has been brought along with handicaps in mind, and an opening mark of 63 may well be on the lenient side if that proves to be the case.
3.40: Understory (NAP)
4.10: Daring Indian (NB)
4.40: Giovanni Di Bicci