Kempton Preview: Stormbound ready to rumble for in-form Cole
Trainer Paul Cole has him team in fine form and Stormbound looks to holding leading claims of providing him with another winner in the 1m handicap at Kempton this evening (7.55).
The Whatcombe based handler has saddled four winners from his last eight runners, and in Stormbound has an in-form gelding who runs the track well and looks on a workable mark.
The five-year-old won over course and distance last November when finishing strongly to get up close home and score by a head off a mark of 65 and backed that up with an excellent effort on seasonal reappearance, again over course and distance, when beaten just a nose off 68.
Stormbound then got back on the winning trail at Bath, before posting another solid effort over CD to finish runner-up off his current mark of 71.
The son of of Galileo then ran far better than his finishing position suggests last week at Lingfield when fourth of 12 to Fiftyshaedsofgrey, being forced to race wide and make a move too early from home.
Stormbound now meets the winner on 6lb better terms for a 3 3/4 length beating, and given how the race panned out that may be enough to see him turn the tables.
In the 1m nursery (8.20), the progressive Hard To Handle could well have got in lightly on handicap debut.
The Ralph Beckett trained gelding shaped with promise in his first two starts before scoring in good style last time out over 7f at Wolverhampton.
After being held-up Hard To Handle made good headway four from home being produced inside the last ran on strongly to beat Elis Eliz by a neck.
The front to pulled 5 lengths clear of the field, and the runner-up went on to register a comfortable victory next time up.
The fifth home Cosmic Ray, who was beaten 10 3/4 lengths, also went on to win on handicap debut at Windsor off a rating of 73 and that suggests Hard To Handel’s opening mark of 79 is very exploitable.
Connections have also booked Seb Sanders to do the steering, and that looks a big positive as he has a 21% strike rate when teaming up with the yard in the past 12 months.
5.55: Silken Waters
6.55: Global Force
7.25: Spanish Squeeze
7.55: Stormbound (NAP)
8.25: Hard To Handel (NB)
8.55: Never To Be