Zan's the man to follow at Ripon

Red Hand

Zanetto ended a near four-year losing spell last time out and can make the most of his renewed confidence in the Directors Cup Handicap at Ripon this evening.

Before his Thirsk verdict, the seven-year-old had last got his head in front when winning a Listed heat at Newbury in May 2013 when he was trained by Andrew Balding.

To be fair to the Medicean gelding, he was then pretty highly tried, including two runs at the highest level in which he was thoroughly outclassed, and a string of competitive handicap events.

Those handicaps proved more his level but while he placed on a couple of occasions, he did not win and he was shipped out of Balding's yard for 50,000 guineas in October 2015.

He hardly set the world alight in six starts for new handler John Quinn last year, but returning from a five-month break at Thirsk, Zanetto made full use of his lowest mark since 2012 to run out a length winner.

He has been hiked back up to a mark of 89 now, but that remains some 6lb below his starting point last season and it will disappointing if he cannot put up a bold show again.

Two runs in as many days at the start of the month clearly did not suit Arab Moon but he can get back on the right track in the Handicap at Kempton.

Winner of a modest affair at the Sunbury venue in April, William Knight sent the three-year-old to Lingfield on May 5 and he shrugged off a 6lb rise to score comfortably without his rider even needing to pick up the whip.

It is understandable connections opted to turn out again under a penalty 24 hours later, but his wide draw was probably not totally ideal and he lacked a bit of zip when really asked to challenge.

Given a nice break since then, Arab Moon should be suitably refreshed and can strike that last lacklustre effort from the record.

Not content with commanding the jumps scene, Gordon Elliott is making his mark in the Flat division too and his High Expectations can post a good effort at Hamilton.

A dual hurdles winner, High Expectations showed he does not need obstacles to excel as he pitched up at Ayr to land a cosy success last week.

Running in an amateurs event, he made the most of bottom weight and a fine ride from Lisa O'Neill to win off a very lowly mark of just 45.

He carries a 6lb penalty in the Hamilton Park Supporting Racing To School Handicap but looked good value for the official winning margin of a length and will certainly want for nothing in the saddle with Joe Fanning booked.

Haraz hit the bar when second at Beverley last week and can go one place better in the Weatherbys Hamiltonian Handicap.

Nap: Zanetto

(8.05: Ripon)

Double: Arab Moon

(7.25: Kempton)

Treble: High Expectations

(3.10: Hamilton)

Yankee: Haraz

(4.10: Hamilton)

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