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York Preview: Idea looks a good one on handicap debut

There are some terrific handicaps supporting the two feature events on the opening day of York’s Dante meeting, and Idea is by far the most interesting contender in the 7f contest at 3.50.

The Sir Michael Stoute trained colt gave jockey James Doyle no chance of staying in the saddle after veering right out of the stalls on his debut at Goodwood, but looked a smart prospect when winning next time up at Windsor.

After tracking the the leaders, the son of Mizzen Mist was switched right a furlong from home after being short of room and showed a smart turn of foot to beat Exchequer by 1/2 a length on soft ground.

The pair pulled well clear of the third, and the runner-up had previously chased home subsequent Group 1 Racing Post Trophy winner Kingston Hill in at Newbury.

That gives the form a solid look and makes Idea look potentially well-treated off an opening mark of 79.

With underfoot conditions holding no fears, and the prospect of plenty more improvement to come, Idea looks sure to take all the beating for a stable in good form.

In the 1m 2f handicap that opens proceedings (1.45), Awake My Soul could be the answer now dropped back in trip from what looks a workable mark.

The David O’Meara trained gelding was in good form in the early part of last season, winning his maiden in good style at Beverley before landing two 1m 2f handicaps in his next three starts.

The son of Teofilo also finished an excellent fourth of 19 to Danchai in the valuable John Smith’s Cup over course and distance off a mark of 93, and now runs off 2lb lower.

That gives Awake My Soul every chance at the weights, and it’s interesting that connections are now dropping him back to 1m 2f following a promising run over 1m 4f last time out.

Lanceot Du Lac has a good record at the track and looks decent value to further enhance it in the 6f handicap sprint (2.15).

Trained by Dean Ivory, the gelding was a progressive sort last year when winning four times.

Two of those wins came at this venue, and the last came over this afternoon’s trip where Lancelot Du Lac showed a nice turn of foot to beat Secondo with far more in hand than the winning margin of 3/4 of a length suggests off a mark of 92.

The four-year-old has since scored twice on the all-weather, and ran well after a break to finish fiffth of 12 to Trinityelitedotcom over 6f at Kempton on his first start of 2014 off today’s mark of 103.

That run showed the son of Shamardal should be capable of winning races from his current rating, and with underfoot conditions holding no fears a big run looks on the cards now that Lancelot Du Lac is returned to a venue which clearly suits.