Wolverhampton Preview: Free Code can cash-in on class drop
Trainer James Tate has a good record with his runners at Wolverhampton, and Free Code can further enhance it with victory in the 1m 1f contest there today (4.30) now eased in grade.
The Newmarket handler has a strike rate of just under 23% with his runners at the Midland’s venue in the past 12 months, and in Free Code has a relatively lighty-raced type who should be capable of winning races of this nature of a mark of 90.
The gelding won twice over sprint distances as a juvenile, and prior to disappointing last time out had posted two really solid efforts.
After going down by just a neck to Spark Plug in the first of those over a mile at Doncaster, Free Code ran a blinder to finish 11th of 30 in the ultra competitive class 2 Britannia Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The son of Kodiac kept on well to be beaten 6 1/2 lengths, and the form looks extremely strong in the context of this lower grade class 3 contest – especially as Free Code now runs off 2lb lower.
That run suggested that today’s trip of 1m 1f should suit, and connections are also now fitting Free Code with the cheekpieces for the first time.
If they have the desired effect, the three-year-old looks well-treated on his Royal Ascot run and capable of running a huge race in the hands of Kieren Fallon.
The other bet that appeals on a marathon eight-race card is Lord Of Dance in the 7f handicap (6.00).
Trained in Cheshire by Mick Mullineaux, the gelding has become dangerously well-treated and now gets the services of Silvestre De Sousa in the saddle for the first time.
The eight-year-old was in terrific form last season, when scoring six times and constantly defying the handicapper.
In the last of those successes, Lord Of The Dance hammered Karaka Jack by seven lengths off a mark of 82 in the 7f amateur rider’s handicap at Ascot, a victory which saw the assessor whack him up to 93.
The son of Indian Haven went on to finish a solid third at Haydock off 90, but has subsequnetly failed to trouble the judge in nine starts.
However, Lord Of The Dance’s handicap mark has plummetted as a result and he now gets into this off a rating of just 67.
That is 15lb lower than when last successful, and makes Lord Of The Dance look weighted to take all the beating.
The booking of SDS also suggests that connections mean business, and another plus is that Lord Of The Dance is the three time winner at the venue.
Those wins all came on the old polytrack surface, but there is no reason to believe that Lord Of The Dance will not be just as effective on the new Tapeta surface.
3.00: La Cuesta
3.30: China Excels
4.00: Citizen Kaine
4.30: Free Code (NAP)
5.00: Paris Carver
5.30: Sky Steps
6.00: Lord Of The Dance (NB)