2.55 Nottingham – La Diva
La Diva is the favourite for the 8.5 furlong maiden at Nottingham and Roger Varian’s inmate will be looking to compensate supporters for her odds on reversal last time out. She was beaten at Newmarket after going off at prohibitive odds due to a very promising debut effort. Conditions at Nottingham should be more to the horse’s liking and the competition does not look particularly strong.
daughter of Helmet, La Diva made her debut at Newmarket back in July and after going off at odds of 9.0, she made an eye-catching first racecourse appearance, finishing second behind a facile winner. That run prompted the horse to be backed off the boards when competing over the same course and distance (7 furlongs at Newmarket) and she didn’t step forward from that first effort. The most probable reason for the sub-par second effort was the ground – it was a lot faster than on debut. She also looked a little one paced in the closing stages and suggested that a step up in trip might be beneficial.
Soft ground and 8.5 furlongs at Nottingham should be perfect and even without improving, La Diva has the best form in the field. John Gosden has one that may improve and there are a couple of newcomers lurking in the field, but La Diva is a worthy favourite and could go off at shorter odds than +200 with Bet365 and Ladbrokes.
9.10 Kempton – St Andrews
Ian Williams is an adept trainer under both flat and national hunt codes and his runners are always worth a second look, especially when they are partnered by the all-weather maestro Adam Kirby. What makes St Andrews particularly interesting is that he sports the first-time visor which should help the horse concentrate. He is currently 0/17, but showed some ability last time out when finishing second. The horse has displayed awkward tendencies on more than one occasion, but this race is particularly winnable and he has a very strong jockey on board. If it isn’t today, then the horse will struggle to find a better opportunity. He can be supported at odds of +600 with Bet365 and Ladbrokes.
It is best to focus on St Andrews run last time out – he finished second at Lingfield over 2 miles. There are a few things that were notable from that effort – the horse sat handy earlier but became outpaced/spat the dummy out before staying on again to snatch second late in the day. Lingfield is a much tighter track that Kempton with a short home straight, and tonight’s course is likely to suit better. The visor should concentrate the horse and he will have his mind made up by Adam Kirby.
Ian Williams is one of the best trainers when applying the first-time visor to his runners – they are 14/72 (19%) for £64 LSP, with the horses scoring 47% more often than they are entitled to based on odds. Let’s hope St Andrews puts his best foot forward in the lucky last.
14:55 Nottingham – La Diva to win
Wednesday 4th October
21:10 Kempton – St Andrews to win
Wednesday 4th October