FIFTYSHADESARESDEV WILL APPRECIATE THIS STEP UP IN TRIP.
We have two runners at Pontefract on Monday, where the going at the time of writing is good to soft, soft in places.
Fiftyshadesaresdev goes to post at 1.45.pm, for the 'Harriet Bethell's IJF Pontefract Course Walk Nursery Handicap' over a mile, for horses rated 0-75, with P.J. McDonald retaining the ride. Fiftyshadesaresdev has positively answered every question asked of him in his four previous races. On his second start at Thirsk in August over a mile he stayed on pleasingly to finish fourth. He was dropped back to six furlongs at Pontefract in September on good to firm ground, and ran another cracker, staying on for a half a length second in a competitive maiden. His last start was also over the same course and distance, racing in handicap company for the first time on soft ground, once again he was doing his best work at the business end of the race, more than hinting that Monday's mile will be much more suitable. Whether he has drawn well in stall 11 will be decided by how soft the surface is.
We are also represented by the four year old gelding Gold Zabeel, who has his fourth start for us at 4.40.pm, in 51-70 handicap over six furlongs, with Andrew Breslin who rode him at Carlisle in July back in the saddle. It was in that race at Carlisle where Gold Zabeel ran his best race for us since joining from the Mark Johnson yard, where he raced on eight occasions as a three year old. The six furlongs that day at Carlisle on good to firm ground looked on the sharp side for him as he finished the race well to finish third. When he was stepped up to seven at Thirsk in September, he missed the break and never got competitive, and on his most recent start at Newcastle, he once again was slowly away, and was completely outpaced over their five furlongs. On Monday he steps back up to six, from stall three, on a probable soft surface, which is ground he has never encountered before. To keep up to date with all the latest happenings at Oakwood Stables, and Sharp Hill, click on 'NEWS' at www.mickyhammondracing.
Good luck to the connections, Resdev, and D Hague.