In the Christmas at the Heath Court Handicap (2.15) at Newmarket on Friday, Kasbaan appeared to have benefited from wind surgery earlier in the year when returning from a 159-day absence to readily account for odds-on favourite Welsh Lord in a novice stakes at Lingfield last month. The Dansili colt starts life in handicap company on a stiff enough mark, but remains open to further significant improve on his second start back from a break and just his fourth start in all. Of course, he has to prove that he’s at least as effective on the prevailing good to soft going on the Rowley Mile Course at Newmarket as he is on the Polytrack at Lingfield, but his racecourse debut – over a mile, on soft going, at Newbury last October – wasn’t without promise, so he should be fine on that score.
Of 19 three-year-olds that trainer Owen Burrows has saddled on the Rowley Mile in recent years, four have won, five have finished second and one has finished third, giving the Lambourn handler a 21% strike rate and an enviable level stakes profit of 18.00 points. Jockey David Probert is similarly 4-22 (18%) for the yard over the last five seasons, for a level stakes profit of 19.07, so the statistics offer cause for optimism. Kasbaan ran over course and distance, without distinction, on his seasonal debut in April, but his latest Lingfield effort was much more like it and he deserves another chance to demonstrate his ability on turf.
Selection: Newmarket 2.15 Kasbaan to win 9/4