Chelmsford hosts an evening card on the all-weather track there today and this is an open looking handicap being run over a mile.
The William Haggas trained Musical Terms is chasing a hat-trick after wins at Ripon and over course and distance last time out. He ran on nicely to just get home in his last race but has been raised a further three pounds for that win, so this Shamardal three-year-old may need to show further improvement if he is to win again. Ryan Moore takes the ride on him and he has a fantastic record here at Chelmsford. Over the past year he has a strike rate of over 46% and shows a healthy level stakes profit.
Dhalam, trained by John Gosden, is an interesting runner entering a handicap for the first time. He has had just the three runs to date, being placed in a couple of useful looking maidens over a mile before getting his head in front last time out over seven furlongs at Wolverhampton. He was a very short price that day and only just managed to hold on, and this gives me doubts about whether he will have the stamina to last home over a strongly run mile. If he can show improved stamina after his break during the summer then he has definite claims for a place at least.
Waarif is a lightly raced four-year-old for David O'Meara who won last time out at Newcastle in a slightly better quality handicap over a mile. He has just one extra pound to carry for that win and is he can repeat the level of that run two weeks ago (where he won well) then it will make him tough to beat. He is drawn in stall 16, but it usually away very well and has little pace around him, meaning that Daniel Tudhope should have a good chance of getting a decent enough early position.
Cainhoe Star won extremely easily last time out at Kempton over seven furlongs, drawing clear to win by a comfortable three lengths. He has won over a mile previously so stamina won't be an issue, however, he has been raised a further seven pounds for that latest win and is now a full 24 pounds higher than when he won over a mile at Yarmouth in June. He is clearly in great form but this Pivotal gelding will need to be right at the top of his game if he is to win again.
Procurator is yet another last time out winner, coming home in front on soft going at Brighton over seven furlongs. Prior to that he was well beaten here at Chelmsford with Ryan Moore on board (although he didn't get a clear run) and carrying an extra six pounds here today is going to make it a tough ask.
Musical Terms - 2 points @ 4/1