Sandown preview: Course specialist Chain Of Events weighted to strike
Chain Of Events has a terrific record at Sandown, and looks decent value to take advantage of a drop in the weights and further enhance it with victory in the 1m 2f contest on today’s six-race card (15.50).
The gelding has won four of his nine starts over course and distance, and was in cracking form last summer when landing a hat-trick of handicaps for trainer Michael Wigham.
In the last of those successes, over course and distance, Chain Of Events dug deep and found plenty to gamely beat Vital Evidence by 1/2 a length off a mark of 80.
The eight-year-old went on to finish a creditable 14th of 22 to GM Hopkins in the class 2 Silver Cambridgeshire at Newmarket off 82, and is now able to race in this off a rating of just 77.
That is 3lb lower than when last successful, and gives Chain Of Events every chance from a handicapping perspective.
Although the son of Nayef has failed to trouble the judge in two runs this season, he shaped nicely last time out when a not knocked about sixth at Newmarket and should now be spot on to do himself justice.
The return to this venue is certainly a big plus, and with underfoot conditions fine and Hayley Turner in the saddle everything points to a big run.
Muntadab scored impressively on seasonal reappearance and looks a worthy favourite to follow-up in the 1m 2f handicap (16.20).
The Sir Michael Stoute-trained colt was forced to race out wide after getting hampered in the early stages before showing a smart turn of foot to storm clear a furlong from home and beat Nosey Barker by three lengths in a 1m maiden at Lingfield.
It was a most taking performance, and one which suggested Muntadab had a huge engine and needed keeping firmly on side.
The son of Invincible Spirit has been allotted an opening handicap mark of just 78 on the back of that success, and that could severely underestimate his ability.
To me, Muntadab has the potential to be far better, and after just two starts remains open to stacks of improvement.
Another plus is that Stoute also has a healthy strike rate of 23 per cent with his runners at the track in the past 12 months, and with Paul Hanagan in the saddle Muntadab is going to be very hard to beat.
14.40: Deep Blue Sea
15.15: Whitecliff Park
15.50: Chain Of Events (NAP)
16.20: Muntadab (NB)