Dashing Star can secure a deserved success and book his ticket for All-Weather Championships Finals Day as he tackles the 32Red Conditions Stakes at Lingfield.
The near two-mile event represents a first try on the all-weather for David Elsworth’s charge, but he has shown the ability to handle a variety of conditions on the turf, and his versatility will hopefully be extended to the Polytrack.
The five-year-old turned in some decent performances in competitive heats last term, finishing fifth in the Duke Of Edinburgh at Royal Ascot early in the summer before rounding out the year with a fine third in the November Handicap at Doncaster.
Dashing Star tried to make all on Town Moor but the writing was on the wall some way out as eventual impressive winner Open Eagle was merely cantering in behind before going on to wide-margin victory.
He kept on at the same pace on desperate ground and was only pipped a length for second, suggesting a step back up in trip could suit.
While his previous attempt at two miles ended in defeat, that was in the Queen’s Vase at Ascot so it was likely the quality of the opposition rather than the distance was his undoing.
Ershaad hit the bar in two starts at the back end of last year but can finally get his head in front in the 32Red.com Maiden Stakes.
He put in a promising effort on his racecourse bow but appeared to have taken a little step back when only third at Wolverhampton last month.
Not every horse enjoys the Tapeta surface at Dunstall Park and he is worth another chance back on more familiar Polytrack.
Blue Aegean makes a relatively swift reappearance pay in the 32RedSport.com Handicap at Kempton. She was highly tried last term after beating subsequent Group Three winner and Breeders’ Cup placed runner Osaila on her second start.
The switch back to handicap level saw her come good again with an effortless three-length victory at Chelmsford. Equipped with a hood for the first time, Blue Aegean had clearly benefited from a lengthy break as she shot clear in the straight and even with the 6lb penalty she must carry this time, she still looks hard to beat.
* Selections -
Kempton: 4.30 Encapsulated, 5.00 Peace Prize, 5.30 Millonaires Row, 6.00 Bowsers Bold, 6.30 Blue Aegean, 7.00 Little Miss Mighty, 7.30 Warbond, 8.00 Eastward Ho.
Lingfield: 12.50 Magnified, 1.25 Mazij, 2.00 Ershaad, 2.30 Jungle Bay, 3.00 DASHING STAR (NAP), 3.35 Club House, 4.05 Divine Rule.
Ayr: 12.40 Up And Go, 1.15 Syddan Rose, 1.50 Westend Star, 2.20 The Last Samuri, 2.50 Markem, 3.25 Scarlet Fire, 3.55 Decent Lord. Catterick: 1.00 Cardinal Walter, 1.35 Runswick Days, 2.10 Clondaw Draft, 2.40 Diamond King, 3.10 Mojolika, 3.40 Made Of Diamonds.
Double: Dashing Star and Blue Aegean.