Happy Mondi can claim glory at Sandown
MONDIALISTE can put his fruitless trip to Dubai behind him by returning to winning ways in the bet365 Mile at Sandown today.
David O'Meara probably knew the fate of his stable star before the gates opened at Meydan for the Dubai Turf as continuous rain had turned the ground soft.
A quick look through his form suggests that the seven-year-old is not far off the best milers around on quick ground but when the mud is flying he simply is not as good.
The wettest ground he has won on is good to soft but that was at a lowly level in France when he was still trained by Freddy Head.
His form reached a new level with O'Meara, from being beaten a head in the Lincoln on his stable debut, culminating with a famous win in the Arlington Million last year.
A year previously he also showed his class when winning the Woodbine Mile but both of those of those triumphs were on quick ground.
While he does stay further than eight furlongs, as he showed when winning at Arlington, his best form is at a mile and he should be fit having been trained for Dubai.
With John Gosden stealing a march on his Newmarket neighbours it is hard to look beyond Royal Artillery in the Gordon Richards Stakes.
Far from this being a case of just backing him blindly, however, he also has one of the best pieces of form in the race, having come up against the all-conquering Almanzor last time out.
The lightly-raced Coolmore-owned colt has been hampered by setbacks for most of his career but this could be the season he fulfils his potential.
In beating Scottish and Arab Spring at Haydock he served notice of his talent and his third to Almanzor and Zarak is form out of the top drawer.
Gosden can double up with Monarchs Glen in the Classic Trial.
The son of Frankel created a huge impression at Kempton on his return in handicap company, making a mockery of a mark of 87.
It will be the last time his handicap mark is discussed for a while and his future surely lies in Pattern races.
The Esher Cup looks ultra-competitive with no end of promising three-year-olds lining up.
Roger Charlton's Atty Persse was bought by Godolphin after winning on debut and a mark of 87 is likely to seriously underestimate this son of Frankel.
He is entered in the Dante and the Derby and Charlton had a first time out winner earlier in the week suggesting he has his string plenty forward enough.
At Doncaster Mark Johnston's Rich And Famous will be unlucky to bump into a horse as well handicapped as Victory Angel who beat him at Newmarket last week.
While there are some promising rivals in the six-furlong handicap on Town Moor, his race fitness could be key.
Nicky Henderson's War Creation looks the one to be with in the Saltire Stables Mares' National Hunt Novices' Hurdle at Perth, while at Huntingdon, Marracudja can hit the target for Paul Nicholls in the Follow Us On Twitter At 188Bet Novices' Chase.
Nicholls is also likely to be among the winners at Chepstow, with Copain De Classe holding strong claims in the Sun Trade Windows Novices' Hurdle.
Willie Mullins is throwing everything at the Punchestown Champion Hurdle but it still might not be enough as Petit Mouchoir looks the one to beat.
Attempting to make all as he did in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham is very difficult but he did well to cling on for third after a bad mistake at the second-last.
Vroum Vroum Mag may have won this last year, but looks suited by further these days and if Arctic Fire avoids the bounce factor he may be the main danger from the Mullins camp.
Landing the County Hurdle off top weight is no mean feat, especially after such a long lay-off and he was not beaten far by Faugheen at his best.
After the season Colin Tizzard has had it is hard to look beyond his Finian's Oscar in the Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle.
Forced to miss Cheltenham with a minor setback, he did plenty wrong at Aintree but still maintained his unbeaten record.
Double: Royal Artillery
Treble: Monarchs Glen
Yankee: Atty Persse