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I’ll make this brief, as the race is off in 20 minutes!
Rakan was an eye-catcher on his return from a break last time, when finishing sixth at Chantilly. He has a better draw today, comes here a fresh horse and has a catalogue of solid handicap form to his name, including over course and distance. Providing he gets the breaks, he should go very close
4.10pm Deauville – 1pt each-way Rakan @ 15/2 5 places (Skybet, Betfred, Boylesports, Unibet, Bet365)
Noce D’Or has had plenty of chances in his nine-race career, finishing second on three occasions (including when tipped in this column at Fontainebleau last September). However, he ran as well as he has done all year on his first start for Andreas Schutz at Deauville over this course and distance last time and could give UK raider Mashaaer something to think about.
He ran really well here last time on what was also his first outing on the AW, finishing fourth in a race won by the smart Siam Paragon, and the rest of the first seven home are all rated 39+. It’s worth noting he went through the final couple of furlongs marginally quicker than anything in the field that day.
Schutz does well with his small string and it will be interesting to see if he can get Noce D’Or to build on that promising debut, as he was well-regarded at the beginning of the season when in the care of Mikel Delzangles. He could run a good bit below that level and still hit the frame here, so the 4-1 makes plenty of appeal form for each-way backers.
Mashaaer really deserves a win and is a classy performer on her day, notably when fifth of 28 in the Sandringham at Royal Ascot in June. She has looked unlucky not to shed her maiden tag, getting beaten by a neck and a nose on her last two starts, but the price discrepancy between the pair is a bit too big.
2pts win, 1pt place Noce D’Or @ 5-1 (most firms, 11/2 with William Hill)
Solar Science (4.45pm) has been off since a highly-promising third at Deauville in late August. Andre Fabre started him off in class 1 company and it is a smart piece of form, particularly in the context of this weak maiden. He is drawn wide on reappearance and should be too good for these, but is priced accordingly.