By Tony Calvin
I am always loathe to tip the horse given it is so hard to spell but Sandfrankskipsgo looks a pretty solid 15-2 chance to me in the 5f handicap at Brighton.
There is no big story other than he is a course-and-distance winner with a good record here – track form figures of 1244 – and he has been dropped 2lb after a fair run at Windsor last month.
He is now 12lb lower than when starting the year, despite running fairly consistently in the main, and he is weighted to get back on the winning trail once again.
The fact that he was dropped 2lb to 71 after his last start allows him to get into this 0-70 handicap, and this is a fair class drop for him. In fact, this is his first run in this grade of handicap. Hopefully, his relative class can tell.
In the 4.15pm, Trust The Man could be worth a speculative fiver each-way at 11-1. As the horse is trading at a bigger price in the win-only Betfair exchange market, however, make sure you back him with a firm that offers you Best Odds Guaranteed.
I do not normally recommend each-way bets but Betfred, Sky Bet, Ladbrokes and Coral are also offering four places in this 14-runner handicap – William Hill, Paddy Power and Betfair go 12s but offer three places only - and that is a decent concession.
There is a fair bit of guesswork with this horse, hence the recommendation is to small stakes, but he is undoubtedly interesting having made the short Epsom journey from Simon Dow to Adam West’s yard since we last saw him in January, stopping en route for a gelding operation, as well.
We have to take his fitness on trust but he is 1lb lower than a decent third at Wolverhampton over 1m6f on his penultimate start – that run worked out pretty well, and he has form over this 12f trip, too.
His new trainer has gone to town with the headgear, with first-time cheekpieces accompanying an initial use of a tongue-tie, as well as a hood.
The trainer has only used this cheekpieces angle twice since 2016, and one resulted in a 66-1 win for Doc Sportello at Newcastle in December 2016. On his first start for the yard, too.
Over at Carlisle, where the ground is heavy, it could also be worth looking at a headgear, and ground, play in the 2.20pm, where Chionodoxa is very interesting at the generally available 33-1.
She has nothing in the way of solid form and has always had more in front of her, than behind her, in all her races to date.
But her mark of 46 reflects that (effectively 47, as she is 1lb out of the handicap) and two bits of information, other than this is a modest 0-60 handicap, could make her worth chancing at big odds.
One is first-time cheekpieces. Since 2016 her trainer, Tim Easterby, has been very impressive with five wins from 17 when using these for the first time, and that’s a bet-inducing stat in its own right.
The other angle is her encountering heavy ground for the first time. She may well hate it, as much she appears to loathe ground that is quick or with a bit of ease in it.
But her sire, Haafhd, loved testing conditions, winning the Champion Stakes on soft ground, and her dam, Bollin Nellie, put up her three best efforts on soft and heavy ground when just being touched off in a November Handicap in the slop.
And half-sisters like Multellie and Bollin Julie – she is related to six winners - revelled in heavy ground, too. Easterby will know this all too well, having trained most of the family.
Tony Calvin's Monday tips: (Prices correct at 9.30am|)
2.20 Carlisle: Chionodoxa at a generally available 33-1
4.15 Brighton: Trust The Man each-way at 11-1 with Sky Bet
5.15 Brighton: Sandfrankskipsgo at generally available 15-2