Turf Talk: Star attraction, Firmament, could have supporters on cloud nine at Chelmsford

Firmament can have his supporters on cloud nine by hitting the jackpot in the Irish Lotto At totesport.com Handicap at Chelmsford.

Thursday, 12th December 2019, 6:04 am
Firmament, ridden by Daniel Tudhope, winning the Clipper Logistics Stakes at York's 2016 Ebor Festival. PIC: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire

The seven-year-old has been a tremendous servant to the David O’Meara stable and has been gradually coming down the weights since his last run, which was on the Flat at York in June.

He has not been running at all badly since then and has plenty of course form, including a win over this mile. His last two outings at the Essex venue were over seven furlongs, when it looked as though he would be suited by stepping back up to a mile.

Firmament’s last start was over that distance at York in October when he was second of 15, only beaten two and a quarter lengths by Crownthorpe, off this mark. That run suggests his turn is near and he looks to have plenty going for him in this race.

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Lucky’s Dream can register his third course success in the Buy Your 2020 Membership Now Handicap.

Successful over a mile and a quarter in November and December 2018, the four-year-old has, understandably, gone up in the ratings in the last 12 months, but is still being very competitive on turf as well as having a spell over hurdles.

This will be his first run back at Chelmsford since last December, but it does look a good opportunity for the gelding, owed by Roger Brookhouse, whose colours are more familiar over jumps.

Elsewhere on the card, Spirit Of May is fancied to make his course knowledge count in the Bet In Play At totesport.com Handicap.

Roger Teal’s three-year-old has won and finished third in three visits to this track – the latest being a successful one in October.

Yasir can roll back the years in the Betway Heed Your Hunch Handicap at Wolverhampton.

It is almost exactly 12 months since the 11-year-old got his head in front but he retains his form, and enthusiasm, really well after 125 starts. Career win number 16 looks on the cards.

Ravenhill Road can strike gold in the Spa At Ramside Hall Novices’ Chase at Newcastle.

Placed at Grade Two level last term for Brian Ellison, Ravenhill Road is now with Sue Smith and made a fine start for that handler when second at Wetherby last month.

Beaten two lengths by the useful Good Boy Bobby, Ravenhill Road turned in a fine round of jumping and it will surely be a matter of time before he is off the mark over fences.

Locker Room Talk can hold sway in the Bluqube Handicap Chase at Taunton.

The six-year-old had the misfortune to take on the smart Nube Negra on his fencing debut at Fakenham, but was not disgraced in third place.

Third again at Wincanton on his handicap chase bow, Locker Room Talk has been found a good spot by his trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies.

Maire Banrigh turned a few heads when taking the scalp of Thomas Darby at Warwick five weeks ago and looks a good bet to follow up at the same track, against her own sex this time.

She had also won her debut over fences in a handicap at Stratford and Dan Skelton’s seven-year-old should be hard to beat for Listed honours in the Actioncoach Lady Godiva Mares’ Novices’ Chase.

SOBOT’S SELECTIONS

CHELMSFORD: 3.50 Indie Angel, 4.20 Don’tyouwantmebaby, 4.50 Geneva Spur, 5.20 FIRMAMENT (NAP), 5.50 Spirit Of May (next best), 6.20 Clap Your Hands, 6.50 Lucky’s Dream (treble), 7.20 Muraaqeb.

NEWCASTLE: 12.40 The Pine Martin, 1.10 Diamond Brig, 1.45 Orrisdale, 2.15 Donald Dux, 2.50 Ravenhill Road, 3.20 Call Me Freddie.

TAUNTON: 12.30 Rococo River, 1.00 France De Reve, 1.30 Not Never, 2.05 Miss Zip, 2.35 Cervaro Mix, 3.10 Locker Room Talk, 3.40 Whatsthecraicjack.

WARWICK: 12.20 Palladium, 12.50 Kalooki, 1.20 Maire Banrigh, 1.55 Tick Tock Boom, 2.25 Fifth Symphony, 3.00 Petit Palais, 3.30 Cadzand.

WOLVERHAMPTON: 3.35 Illustrious Spirit, 4.05 Sea Tea Dea, 4.35 Yasir, 5.05 Holy Eleanor, 5.35 Copperlight, 6.05 Seaforth.