Smart's filly is a donkey worth backing

CONE Donkey can be followed with a degree of confidence at Catterick in the Dine And View At Catterick Races Handicap.

Bryan Smart’s filly was only just touched off here over six furlongs last time when attempting to make all, and was miles clear of the third, so her chance is there for all to see dropped to the minimum trip.

Perth’s good three-day meeting begins where Victor Dartnall’s Ambion Wood is the class act on show in the EBF ‘‘Future Champions’’ ‘‘National Hunt’’ Novices’ Hurdle.

Just touched off in a Grade Two at Warwick by the classy Cotton Mill, he got stuck in the mud behind Brindisi Breeze at Haydock but back on a sounder surface he won a big race at Sandown last time out.

If this were a handicap he would be giving away lumps of weight but the conditions of this contest suit him very much.

Thomasgainsborough can put down an early Aidan O’Brien Epsom marker with victory in the Investec Derby Trial.

In all probability O’Brien will have bigger guns to fire at the premier Classic in June, but this 10-furlong conditions event will give him a sighter. And Thomasgainsborough is no mug, either, and is certain to have come on a bundle for his recent comeback third in a decent enough handicap at Dundalk.

Running over a mile, the Dansili colt stayed on nicely behind an unbeaten youngster trained by Ger Lyons.

O’Brien’s horses invariably improve a great deal for their first outings, and while he might not end up as a leading contender in a Derby proper, he is a decent tool in this sort of context.

Oceanway can reward each-way support in the Investec City And Suburban Handicap. Mark Johnston’s filly will be fitter than most having run twice at the start of the year, and close inspection of her form shows she ran some excellent races last season in tough handicaps. Silvestre de Sousa is back on board and a mark of 94 is just 1lb higher than her last winning one, at York in October.

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