5:50 Chelmsford -
A Novice Stakes (Plus 10) Class 4 on Standard going.
Seven two-year-olds take part: four with racecourse experience.
Two significantly entered juveniles here. So Hi Speed wasn't too fancied on debut at Newcastle but ruined any chance by pulling much too hard. The form of that race is difficult to assess and by all accounts this American-bred son of Central Banker needs to settle and find improvement. Trainer, Robert Cowell, has Pocket Dynamo in the field and shorter price so So Hi Speed may be here for a supporting role. However, the significant entry does suggest more is expected and that could be the case. This looks a competitive heat with the Appleby favourite likely to be short odds. Nonetheless, the Cowell runner is worth noting.
*Hard Forest is the other horse who has received a significant entry. She ran well on debut, but tired slightly in the closing stages to finish a creditable third. She looked to be going great guns at Newmarket but tired markedly in the closing stages. The going was testing and she may have gone a stride too fast. The race time was slow and she looked a short runner. Third start at Yarmouth was a disappointing display in ways unless the form of that race proves decent. It could be the case that it will because Michael Bell's Artair ran out a tidy winner. A wide draw isn't ideal. I can see Mark Johnston's youngster making the most of her experience and getting to the lead. These turning courses are better for horses who may well struggle to get home. She is likely to lead and if gaining a few easy lengths may take some pegging back.
A trio of debutantes who could go well. Certainly, most punters will be looking to Shellbrook to rule the roost. If talented, could win well. However, a turning course isn't the best starting point for any horse which may make one or two here value. Shame this wasn't three places.
On balance, I will take a watching brief.
NR: Hard Forest, One One Seven