Draw concern for Simcock
David Simcock is hopeful Doctor Sardonicus can overcome a wide draw at Chelmsford City in the Toteswinger Three Ways To Win Handicap today.
David Simcock, trainer of Doctor Sardonicus
The five-year-old, who was beaten in the last stride in a six-furlong handicap at Chelmsford City last month, is drawn widest of all in 12.
He drops back in trip for the five-furlong Toteswinger Three Ways To Win Handicap, one of two £35,000 handicaps on the card, but it's his wide draw that worries his handler more.
"It will be very hard from that draw but he loves the surface and has plenty of pace," Simcock commented.
"He is probably best over six furlongs rather than five but, with this sort prize money, we are happy to give it a go. It will depend on how Doctor Sardonicus breaks, what position he can get and how much luck he has in running."
The weights are headed by Sir Maximilian (Ian Williams/George Downing), Listed Golden Rose Stakes third Kimberella (David Nicholls/Connor Beasley), and a Mick Easterby-trained duo of Bowson Fred (Nathan Evans) and Bosham (Joe Fanning), who has won on five of his seven course starts.
Joining Doctor Sardonicus on the journey from Newmarket are a pair from Robert Cowell's Bottisham Heath Stud yard, Encore d'Or (Sean Levey) and Huntsmans Close (Luke Morris).
Cowell declared: "Encore d'Or has been gelded since he last ran in June – he had just started to get stallion-like rather than racing-like.
"He has been very effective on the All-Weather (won three from five), but he will have to be on the top of his game to win this race.
"He has been working well but has a bad draw (10) and may just need the race after his break. I think he will do well again this winter on the All-Weather if not on Monday.
"We have been getting Huntsmans Close to behave and enjoy himself on his last few runs. He would be very well handicapped on his best form and should be spot on.
"Huntsmans Close has only had one run on the All-Weather (Kempton Park, 6f, October 5) when he led for a long way and showed lots of speed."
The other £35,000 contest is the Totetrifecta Pick The 1,2,3 Handicap (3.30pm, 14 runners) over a mile.
Solar Deity (Jane Chapple-Hyam/Charrlie Bennett) and Third Time Lucky (Richard Fahey/Tony Hamilton) head the weights.
Other runners include hat-trick seeking Fort Bastion (Brian Ellison/Robert Winston), unbeaten so far at Chelmsford City, and My Target (Michael Wigham/Connor Beasley) who won a competitive handicap at Lingfield Park on November 12.
Last year's renewal was won by the Roger Varian-trained Mindurownbusiness who went on to finish third in the 2016 All-Weather Mile Championships Conditions Stakes on Good Friday.
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