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  • Windsor Best Bets: Surrey Noir Can Hit The Ground Running, Violets Star Looks Interesting

Windsor best bets: Surrey Noir can hit the ground running, Violets Star looks interesting

A Monday meeting at Windsor can mean only one thing: the bread-and butter business of the Flat season is upon us, and this handicap gives a dozen sprinters an early chance to blow away a few cobwebs.

15:50 Windsor: Paul Dean’s First Visit to Windsor Handicap (6 furlongs)

With most of the field making their season debut after an extended break, Leap Abroad has been busier than most during the winter, and has been installed as the tentative early favourite after backing up a narrow win at Wolverhampton in November with a creditable second last time out at the same venue three weeks ago.

Tiriac is expected to hit the ground running for Jack Channon, while Amazonian Dream must have a serious chance if able to recapture the form of his 2023 season finale, when he won by half a length in a competitive 10-runner handicap over this same course and distance.

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Also catching the eye is Dear Daphne, but our main nod goes to the Charlie Fellowes-trained four-year-old Surrey Noir, whose debut season brought a couple of respectable if modest fifth-placed finishes on the turf before finishing his 2023 campaign with a flourish on the all-weather.

A close-up second over seven furlongs at Kempton was quickly converted into a convincing 2½-length success over the same trip a fortnight later.

He was last seen stepping up to 0-80 level at the same venue in October, when he acquitted himself well in stronger company, and despite being severely hampered early on, he eventually ran on strongly to finish fourth of 13 capable sprinters.

The gelding’s stable is in hot form at the moment, with Fellowes having saddled winners with his only two runners at Yarmouth and Wolverhampton on Saturday, and if Surrey Noir is produced in similar shape, then we can expect a decent season debut in the capable hands of Kieran Shoemark.

Suggested best bet: Surrey Noir each-way in the 15:50 at Windsor

 

An early-season handicap such as this is a prime target for a surprise win, and there has been a smattering of support among Tipstrr’s each-way pundits for Violets Star, who was last seen trailing in last of 10 in a five-furlong dash at Doncaster’s Lincoln meeting 22 days ago.

If we can forgive that effort as an early-season pipe-opener over the inadequate minimum trip, then Adam West’s four-year-old filly should be sharpened up for this return to her preferred six furlongs, the distance at which she signed off last season with a cosy 1¾-length victory in a six-runner handicap at Ffos Las in August.

She should be given the best possible chance by jockey Silvestre de Sousa, who landed four straight runner-up spots at Yarmouth on Saturday, and boasts an exceptional 25 percent win rate at Windsor, where he has also made the frame with 55 of his last 101 rides. 

Each-way punt: Violets Star in the 15:50 at Windsor

 

READ MORE: Windsor racing tips: Best bets for Monday April 15

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