Yarmouth Preview: Pleasant Valley value to land hat-trick
The ultra-progressive Pleasant Valley looks decent value to take the step up into Listed company in her stride and land the 1m 2f feature contest on today’s card at Yarmouth (3.25).
The filly is a typical improver from the Luca Cumani stable, who after showing promise in three maiden runs came good at the fourth time of asking when readily beating the highly regarded Shama’s Crown by 1 1/2 lengths at Doncaster.
The daughter of Shamardal then followed-up in emphatic style on handicap debut at the same venue, travelling strongly on the heels of the leaders before making smooth headway two from home and only having to be shaken-up at the furlomng marker to shoot clear and score by 3 1/4 lengths.
The manner of that success suggested that Pleasant Valley had a huge engine and was well worth a crack at this level.
The three-year-old is clearly improving at a rate of knots, and her handler is a master at bringing along his fillies slowly to plunder prizes like this.
Pleasant Valley has a similar profile to the stable’s Silk Sari who won a handicap on debut this season before progressing to land the Group 2 Park Hill Stakes in runaway style, and with the prospect of more to come needs keeping firmly onside.
In the 1m handicap (4.30), The John Gosden trained Never To Be can take advantage of what looks a lenient mark to land the spoils.
The colt was successful twice last year, and ran a cracker on seasonal reappearance back in March when second of six to Passing Star at Kempton.
Never To Be stayed on to go down by 1 1/2 lengths, and in hindsight faced an impossible task trying to give 6lb to a horse now rated 102.
It makes the son of Thewayyouare look on a handy mark having been raised just 3lb to 84, and although Never To Be is returning to the track after a 195 day absence that run shows that he can go well fresh.
The lightly-raced Invincible Strike shaped as if coming to hand last time out and looks weighted to take all the beating in the 5f handicap (5.00).
The James Tate trained colt has only had seven starts, and after making a winning debut at Hamilton went on to finish runner-up on handicap debut at Wolverhampton off a mark of 95.
The three-year-old then ran below par in his first two starts this season, before putting in a much improved effort when finishing fourth to Go Far at Wolverhampton earlier in the month off 97 when tried in blinkers for the first time.
Invincible Strike finished just a neck behind Speed Hawk, and now meets that rival on 6lb better terms having since been dropped 7lb by the assessor to what looks a very exploitable rating of 90.
2.50: Fever Few
3.25: Pleasant Valley (NAP)
4.00: Endless Credit
4.30: Never To Be (NB)
5.00: Invincible Strike