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Lancashire Telegraph Racing Column
7:34am Tuesday 27th May 2014 in Sport
Silver Ranger let favourite-backers down on his York debut but can reward those who keep the faith in the British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Stakes at Leicester.
The very fact master juvenile trainer Richard Hannon decided to send the Dutch Art colt to the Dante Festival suggests he had been showing plenty at home and he was unsurprisingly well fancied in the market to get the job done at the first attempt.
Although he came up short, beaten little over a length into third, York maidens are notoriously tough and time is likely to prove this was another hot race, with Mick Channon eyeing up a trip to Royal Ascot for the winner, Bossy Guest.
With the run likely to sharpen him up a touch, Silver Ranger should recoup the money that went west a couple of weeks ago before going on to compete at a higher level.
Mercury Magic is worth chancing on his first start outside maiden company in the Oadby Handicap.
Ralph Beckett's gelding showed precious little on his first three appearances, but fared a little better when fourth at Nottingham a couple of weeks ago.
The most intriguing part of the tale is that each of his starts so far have come over six furlongs and he takes a huge step up to a mile and a quarter for his handicap bow.
If he is indeed a middle-distance horse rather than a sprinter, then an initial mark of 60 could look very lenient.
Lamorak shaped with abundant promise on his racecourse introduction at Windsor and rates banker material in Redcar's racinguk.com-sponsored Median Auction Maiden Stakes.
Despite being out of a mare that has produced a few smart winners, the King's Best colt was relatively unfancied for his debut, but ran a stormer to finish a close-up second, beaten just three-quarters of a length.
Both the winner, Purple Spectrum, and the third horse, Grand Meister, had the benefit of previous experience and had also shown decent ability to be placed.
With normal progress, Lamorak should be an incredibly tough nut to crack at the Tees Valley circuit as he aims to supply another winner for Hugo Palmer's burgeoning yard.
The best bet on a competitive all-weather card at Lingfield is the Lady Cecil-trained Colourful, who takes her chance in the first division of the Neck Refunds At 888sport.com Maiden Fillies' Stakes.
Another stoutly-bred filly off Khalid Abdullah's Juddmonte Farms production line, the three-year-old is a half-sister to Kind, the dam of the mighty Frankel, as well as Pattern-race winners Powerscourt, Last Train and Riposte.
Unraced at two, Colourful made her debut at Kempton three weeks ago and having raced up with the pace, only gave way late on and passed the post a creditable fourth.
Runners from this yard are rarely tuned up for their first runs, making improvement virtually assured with that experience under her belt.
She really should be winning a race like this if she is to uphold family honour.
Line D'Aois is of obvious interest on his jumping debut at Hexham.
Michael Scudamore's point-to-point graduate has raced exclusively at the Northumberland venue under Rules, finishing runner-up in a bumper little over a year ago and winning in that sphere in October and again earlier this month.
The demanding nature of the track clearly brings out the best in him and if he lifts a leg he will take some stopping in the Agrical Maiden Hurdle.
Turn Over Sivola should also be well up to the challenge in the Boongate Kia Rio vr7 Novices' Chase at Huntingdon.
BALLINROBE: 6.00 Plinth, 6.30 Benalex Park, 7.00 King Leon, 7.30 Baresi, 8.00 Caim Hill, 8.30 Right Strategy, 9.00 Il Fenomeno.
HEXHAM: 6.40 Line D'Aois, 7.10 The Flaming Matron, 7.40 Leader Of The Gang, 8.10 Bollin Fiona, 8.40 Sambelucky, 9.10 Playhara.
HUNTINGDON: 5.50 Moroman, 6.20 Dorry K, 6.50 Theatrelands, 7.20 Breaking The Bank, 7.50 Turn Over Sivola, 8.20 Clouds Of Mist, 8.50 Shrewd.
LEICESTER: 2.30 Cardinal, 3.00 Native Heart, 3.30 Nirva, 4.00 Warrigal, 4.30 Persun, 5.00 SILVER RANGER (NAP), 5.30 Mercury Magic.
LINGFIELD: 2.10 Peace And War, 2.40 Desert Strike, 3.10 Olivers Mount, 3.40 Baltic Brave, 4.10 Johnny Splash, 4.40 Colourful, 5.10 Scallop, 5.40 Ssafa.
REDCAR: 2.20 Flatcapper, 2.50 Plunder, 3.20 Hussar Ballad, 3.50 Lamorak, 4.20 Tax Free, 4.50 Lendal Bridge, 5.20 Tarquin.
DOUBLE: Silver Ranger and Lamorak.
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