Wolverhampton Preview: Fashion can turn on the style
Old Fashion was a massive eye-catcher when runner-up last time out and holds outstanding claims of going one better in the 7f nursery on this evening’s seven-race card at Wolverhampton (7.50).
The Ed Dunlop trained filly hinted at ability in three maiden runs without hitting the frame, and then duly showed improved form on handicap debut when chasing home What a Party in an eight runner contest at Lingfield.
Old Fashion was held-up well off the pace and forfeited a huge amount of ground when forced to make a move very wide entering the straight.
The daughter of Shirocco then finished with a real rattle to go down by just a length, and looked to have plenty of petrol left in the tank.
Granted better luck in-running there is little doubt in my mind that she would have won, and although now 2lb higher in the weights, Old Fashion looks open to plenty more improvement and likely to prove far better than her current rating of 65.
In the 1m 6f handicap (8.50), Guising is an interesting contender now upped in trip and fitted with cheekpieces for the first time.
The gelding had some decent form to his name last season, winning a maiden at Musselburgh by seven lengths before beating subsequent Northumberland Plate winner Angel Gabrial by a head on handicap debut over 1m 4f at Windsor off a mark of 78.
The runner-up is now rated 106, and that makes Guising a big player in this class 4 contest off a career-low rating of 76.
The David Brown trained five-year-old does have to bounce back from two low key runs this season, but that may well not be out of the question if the step up in trip and fitting of the headgear has the desired effect.
China Excels is another horse that has become very well-treated and looks the answer to the 5f handicap that closes proceedings (9.20).
The gelding has just one win to his name, and that came over 5f at Beverley in June 2013 where he made all and stayed on strongly to win easing down by 3 1/2 lengths off a mark off 55.
The son of Exceed And Excel got put up to 64 for that runaway success, and his form subsequently tailed off.
However, China Excels now runs off a lowest rating ever of just 47 as a result and that gives him every chance from a handicapping perspective in race lacking any real stength in depth.
6.20: Allergic Reaction
7.50: Old Fashion (NAP)
9.20: China Excels (NB)