Make things per­sonal with In­ti­ma­tion

Warwickshire Telegraph - - SPORT -

SIR MICHAEL STOUTE is look­ing for­ward to a big week­end with two live chances in the In­vestec Derby, but In­ti­ma­tion can en­sure the yard heads to Ep­som in high spir­its by land­ing a Listed suc­cess at Not­ting­ham.

The four-year-old lines up in the EBF Stal­lions to­te­ex­acta Not­ting­hamshire Oaks Stakes for what will be just the fifth start of her ca­reer, and she looks a filly of po­ten­tial at this stage.

A daugh­ter of Coro­na­tion and Fal­mouth Stakes sec­ond In­fal­li­ble, it is easy to see why own­ers Cheve­ley Park have per­sisted with this Dubawi filly de­spite the stop-start na­ture of her rac­ing ca­reer so far.

Well down the field on her sole ju­ve­nile start in a race that pro­duced a few classy winners, In­ti­ma­tion sprang a 20-1 shock when win­ning on her re­turn at New­mar­ket last May be­fore fol­low­ing up with a con­vinc­ing suc­cess on her hand­i­cap bow at Le­ices­ter last July.

How­ever, some­thing was clearly amiss af­ter that run as In­ti­ma­tion did not reap­pear un­til turn­ing out at New­mar­ket again at the end of April, when she made lit­tle im­pact in a hand­i­cap event.

Beaten three lengths, In­ti­ma­tion will likely have come on plenty for the out­ing as she could only stay on at the one pace when the race re­ally heated up, sug­gest­ing that she was per­haps a bit ring rusty too.

Fort Bas­tion may still be a lit­tle short of the form that saw him re­ceive a rat­ing of 106 but he should still be good enough in the totet­ri­fecta Pick The 1,2,3 Hand­i­cap.

Now with David O’Meara af­ter spells with Richard Han­non snr, Ed Dunlop, Richard Fa­hey and Ruth Carr, you would think Fort Bas­tion prob­a­bly has lit­tle left to give.

O’Meara is a mas­ter at ek­ing out the best of such sea­soned an­i­mals though, and his cur­rent mark of 96 ap­pears to be a very work­able perch judged on his re­cent fast-fin­ish­ing fourth at York.

He was ac­tu­ally rac­ing off a 1lb higher rat­ing that day and while only a mi­nor ease, it puts Fort Bas­tion back within strik­ing dis­tance of his last win­ning mark.

Fort Bas­tion ap­pears to take a cou­ple of runs to re­ally hit his best form now, so it could be dan­ger­ous to dis­miss him.

Vi­brant Chords is en­tered in a Listed heat later this week but the de­ci­sion to take in the Bet tote­quad­pot At bet­fred.com Hand­i­cap at Chelms­ford first can pay div­i­dends.

Henry Candy’s charge has cer­tainly shown abil­ity, com­ing home in the first three in each of his five starts to date, count­ing one win amongst those re­sults.

The three-year-old started this term on a mark of 87 fol­low­ing his ad­mirably con­sis­tent run in 2015 and he showed he is still ca­pa­ble of mak­ing his mark when beaten just un­der two lengths on his re­turn at New­mar­ket.

The win­ner of that race, Aclaim, has since been placed in Group Three com­pany so the form has a sturdy look about it and Vi­brant Chords is one who could go on to rank even higher in due course.

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