Sandown Expert Eye: Course stats and tips for the Brigadier Gerard evening meeting

Sandown's evening meeting on Thursday comes under our scrutiny with a selection given for each of the six races.

Our picks along wiith some useful course stats are below, while the highly informative Sandown race card is just a click away at Planet Sport's Racing Live Centre.

Selections:

Whitlock each-way (17.40 Sandown)

Crispy Cat (18.15 Sandown)

Enemy (18.50 Sandown)

Addeybb (19.25 Sandown)

Inigo Jones (20.00 Sandown)

Super Lover (20.35 Sandown)

Course characteristics

Right-handed oval of 1m5f with a 4f uphill run-in. Essentially galloping in nature. A separate diagonal 5f track is also uphill.

Top trainers with runners

Andrew Balding is the winning-most trainer here over the past five years, although his strike rate of 14% (22-157) is modest.

Team Gosden and Charlie Appleby can boast much better strike rates of 23% and 28% respectively, while William Haggas' horses have proved profitable to follow with all his runners yielding a £19.57 return to £1 level-stakes.

Top jockeys with rides

Ryan Moore is tied with William Buick (in action at Yarmouth earlier) on 26 winners (from 121 rides, 21%) over the same period and he looks to have a strong book of rides this evening, including Bay Bridge in the feature and one for Sir Michael Stoute we're quite sweet on.

Ryan Moore teams up with Sir Michael Stoute at Sandown

Rob Hornby is 2-4 here this season and he has three rides this evening, including our each-way pick for the opener.

17.40 Sandown - Whitlock each-way

An open 1m2f handicap to begin with and it could be worth taking a chance on one of the rank outsiders in Andy Irvine's Whitlock, who is returning to the Flat for the first time since October 2018.

A dual winner over this distance for John Gosden during that season, he also posted a couple of sound efforts in defeat over this track and trip off much higher marks than today's, before signing off with a second-place finish on soft ground at Nottingham when rated 87.

Fit from a spell hurdling and running off a mark of 70, he surely has a better chance than his huge odds suggest and he'll be staying on better than some.

Gary Moore's The Whipmaster appeals most of those at shorter prices having gone up just 2lb for winning over this trip at Lingfield 16 days ago, with the promise of more to come.

He's just the type Moore excels with and son Ryan, who won on him at Windsor last May, is back on board.

18.15 Sandown - Crispy Cat

Tajalla justified strong market confidence when bolting up on his debut at Newmarket, taking some pulling up after too, and the runner-up has won a small race since.

County Kildare trainer Michael O'Callaghan provides his main rival in Crispy Cat, who improved on his debut success at Cork when losing out in a tight finish to Aidan O'Brien's Blackbeard at the Curragh.

That form now looks even stronger after the winner landed his hat-trick in some style in a Group 3 and this stiff 5f promises to suit the Irish raider. He might even go off favourite.

18.50 Sandown - Enemy

Enemy might have won a Group 3 at Ascot last time had he not been squeezed for room when it mattered and the five-year-old, who had bolted up in a Musselburgh handicap previously, is clearly developing into a useful stayer.

Quickthorn finished a narrow second in that Ascot contest, which has to go down as a career-best effort and he could have done with softer ground, which he'll encounter here. He rates the main danger.

Thunderous had the run of the race when chasing home Stradivarius in the Yorkshire Cup over 1m6f and needs to prove his stamina for this longer trip.

19.25 Sandown - Addeybb

The unbeaten Bay Bridge is undoubtedly an exciting prospect for this season, but he has a fair bit to find on official ratings and this is surely a prep for Royal Ascot.

The same comment applies to multiple Group 1 winner Addeybb, who is likely to contest the Prince of Wales's Stakes before another crack at Sandown's Eclipse, a race he finished runner-up in last season. That said, he has won after a long break previously and his stable is in irresistible form.

Addeybb is a value selection for Sandown's Brigadier Gerard Stakes

Moshtahdaf has the benefit of a run this term having defied a penalty (something he needs to do again this evening) in a Group 3 here in April, albeit against two rivals.

He's deserving of favouritism but the Haggas runner is the value pick of the trio.

20.00 Sandown - Inigo Jones

Given Sir Michael Stoute's record of improving horses with age, it's very likely we have yet to see the best from his Inigo Jones, who should strip fitter for his comeback run on the all-weather last month.

He was campaigned over 1m2f last season, winning once and running third in a handicap here on his final outing of last term, when his free-going tendencies again proved his undoing.

Now gelded and running off his lowest handicap mark, he could prove hard to beat now dropping back to a mile under what is likely to be a positive ride from Ryan Moore, with his extra bit of stamina coming in handy at the finish.

He's a fair price too with course and distance winner Farasi Lane currently heading the betting and while that horse is respected, he does look to be in the handicapper's grip.

20.35 Sandown - Super Lover

A highly competitive 1m handicap to finish and it could go to Alan King's Super Lover, who qualified for handicaps when chasing home a decent sort of Charlie Appleby's (good third at York since) at Windsor earlier this month.

That run confirmed the promise he had shown at two and an opening mark of 79 could prove a tad generous when you consider the horse that finished just in front of him at Chelmsford in November is now rated 89 following a maiden success.

The selection's running style and breeding suggests he'll stay a little further, so this stiff uphill finish won't faze him, and plenty of stablemates have been winning recently (8-24, 33%, in the last fortnight).

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