Shamaal Nibras - Sandown, Thursday
Normally when I look at a race, a bit like when you turn over your exam paper, you scan the field and panic over whom you don't think you can beat. It's not the case here.
I think Shamaal Nibras will win. The fact he is 10-1 is the only surprise. The horse hasn't been in the yard for long but there is much in his favour. A drop of 2lbs, from a promising run at Goodwood (fro an awful draw), enables him to run in a 0-95 for the first time in a while, he acts on the ground and the step up again to a 1m is definitely in his favour.
Shamaal Nibras is a lovely big horse so his stride will be used more tonight than has often been the case with him in the past. There will be plenty of pace in the race with Spa's Dancer, the market leader, the worst drawn in 13, unless they come across to the stands rails.
Plenty of horses in this contest want further and the same number wouldn't want any more rain. I love this horse and his attitude. He really needs to win to cement his place in the Hunt Cup (he is probably too well handicapped now), a race that he would have a chance in.