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Race of the Day on Sky Sports Racing: Greatgadian backed to extend unbeaten all-weather record at Lingfield

An excellent and well-subscribed mid-week Lingfield all-weather card is where Declan Rix goes for Wednesday’s Race of the Day on Sky Sports Racing.

Sadly, we have no National Hunt action on Sky Sports Racing on Wednesday, but we do have a well-supported nine-race card at Lingfield getting underway at 11.25am.

The 10-runner contest BetUK’s Acca Club £5 Free Bet Handicap (2.25) is where we go in search of a winner.

THE GROUNDWORK

Like many of the starts around Lingfield’s left-handed sharp track, a good draw is needed over 10 furlongs in decent-sized fields due to the first turn coming up quickly.

In terms of conditions on the Polytrack, the surface is labelled as ‘standard’ as of Tuesday. With a dry day forecast on Tuesday and also Wednesday, the surface could possibly get a touch slower.

The presence of both Value Theory and the three-year-old Chasing Aphrodite means we have a pair of horses who both recently made the running in their races.

Both are respectively drawn higher than ideal in stalls eight and 10 however, which may mean the early pace will be honest before their jockeys look to put the brakes on.

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Lingfield hosts a nine-race card on Wednesday, all live on Sky Sports Racing

LEADING CONTENDERS

Greatgadian

Unbeaten in three all-weather starts, but yet to compete here at Lingfield. Has won twice at Chelmsford however, another Polytrack surface so should be at home here. Early season all-weather form was sound before dropping off mid-summer, albeit in hot handicaps.

Did finish the turf campaign well however, so with his good gate speed, early pace and being drawn in stall three, must be respected despite carrying top-weight.

Aerion Power

Sent off 11/1 for last season’s Britannia Stakes at Royal Ascot, but draw in stall one wasn’t ideal, seeing him finish a well-held 11th. Three sound runs in warm handicaps followed but missed all of this year’s Flat Turf season before returning in good form 33 days ago.

Looks fairly treated, especially with plenty of all-weather form in the book (never run here at Lingfield), so another to consider, if he doesn’t bounce.

United Front

Ready winner of this race last season off a 2lb lower mark. This year’s renewal will be a different contest, mind, with a bigger field (four ran last year) and a more competitive feel to it.

At least comes into the race in good form, and from stall six with his good ability to break, should be in a better position than most. Although saves his best for the all-weather, does feel like he might just be a little high in the handicap at the moment. Each-way player still.

United Frony (black and yellow) chases home Chance at Kempton
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United Frony (black and yellow) chases home Chance at Kempton

Chichester

A horse very much at home on the all-weather and also in great form. Two starts back at Southwell, did incredibly well to get within half a length of the winner after a slow start in a tactical race.

In a more strongly-run contest last time out, impressed with how he travelled before winning pretty snugly. Looks in great order at moment, but his habit of either starting slowly or getting into stride slowly means, as always, he’ll need a bit of luck.

Chasing Aphrodite

One of a trio of three-year-olds in the race with the physique to carry on getting better. Young trainer had an excellent season on the turf and connections should have some fun with this son of Profitable on the all-weather this winter. Steps up to 10 furlongs for the first time which wouldn’t be a positive given his sire, but stamina on the dam’s side and the sharp track will help.

Draw in 10 could’ve been better, but not a lot of pace in the race for this prominent racer to take on, which also may help him get home.

BEST OF THE REST

Positive was a high-class juvenile and three-year-old before injury interrupted. Returned in July after 699 days off, but on the evidence of his two runs this year, isn’t as good as he was. First run after being gelded.

Millebosc is another formerly high-class horse who drops down in grade. Once upon a time, he was third to St Mark’s Basilica in the Prix du Jockey Club. Form subsequently has dipped, but so has his rating and must be monitored in the market having his first run for William Haggas after 136-day break with a good 3lb claimer aboard.

The now eight-year-old Via Serendipity has had a wonderful career for his various sets of connections and still remains competitive. He was badly hampered at a critical stage of the race behind Chichester last time out and is now 4lb better off for four-length beating, but still needs a few to underperform to win.

Three-year-old filly Value Theory had a typically busy Classic campaign for her trainers having shown plenty of class in a four-run juvenile season. From stall eight, she will look to go forward under Franny Norton.

Recent hold-up performer Makinmedoit is another three-year-old filly in here and possibly the second string of trainer Harry Eustace’s two runners on jockey bookings. Has her first run in 77 days, but does look overpriced on the back of a career best last time out, with Lingfield all-weather form already in the book.

THE VERDICT

A really good all-weather handicap to break down on a Wednesday’s racing. Both Value Theory and Chasing Aphrodite are the potential pace-setters here, but with the latter stepping up to 10 furlongs for the first time, the former may get an easy lead in a race that might play on the tactical side. This kind of set-up would be a negative for sometimes slow-starter Chichester, although he is clearly in great heart at the moment and respected.

It left Greatgadian (10/3) and last year’s winner United Front (12/1) as the options at the early prices, but the nod just goes to GREATGADIAN as the younger and hopefully still more progressive all-weather performer. Drawn in stall three, it should allow David Egan pick up a near perfect early position behind the speed.

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