It was another tough day for us at York today, and only two of the selections ran with any real credit. The likes of Crimean Tatar, Lil Sophella and to a lesser extent Southdown Lad ran awful races, but at least the last two gave us some sort of a run for our money.
|David Loughnane has his string in great form.
Steph Hollinshead will be delighted with Stoneyford Lad’s fine effort and he wasn’t beaten far at all. He is not a bad horse and he is well capable of picking up a couple of handicaps. As expected the step up in trip brought about a bit of improvement from Sue’s Angel, and she gave us some consolation by grabbing 3rd and rewarding each way support. Tomorrow’s fancy goes in the lucky last at Doncaster, and hopefully he is worth the wait.
Signore Piccolo will be having his first start for David Loughnane in this 6f handicap and he makes his seasonal return off a mark of 77. This 6yo son of Piccolo had a disappointing season in 2016, but he did run a couple of decent races when the ground was soft. He will definitely appreciate the underfoot conditions on Saturday, and he hails from a yard that has been amongst the winners.
This gelding has a good record fresh, winning first time out in 2014 and 2015. The winning run came to an end on his return to action last season but he had an excuse as he was always likely to struggle off a mark of 84. His rating of 77 this time is much more reasonable, and Loughane has enlisted the services of on fire jockey Sam James.
He has ridden plenty of winners in recent weeks and he heads to Doncaster from Thirsk for just one ride. He was beaten by a short head on a 25/1 2yo for Loughnane recently, and he has ridden 3 winners and achieved 19 top 4 finishes from 46 rides for the stable. Signore Piccolo has run twice at Doncaster, and his first run was best when finishing 3rd, beaten less than 2L for the win off 79. That was on unsuitably quick ground too, and he is best with an ease.
Signore Piccolo is rated 5lb below his last winning rating of 82 and he shouldn’t be inconvenienced by his draw in stall 3. He has course form, he has gone well fresh in the past and his trainer has had a fine start to the season. Sam James will be chock full of confidence too after firing in a delicious double at Hamilton on Friday. Hopefully he can continue his excellent run of form on Signore Piccolo, and at odds of 16/1 he is worth chancing each way.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: 20.50 DONCASTER-SIGNORE PICCOLO E/W @ 16/1