5:15 – Kempton – BETFAIR.COM HANDICAP (CLASS 4) (4yo+ 0-85) Winner £4,075 Standard 7f
It is the last day of April and we have no racing on the turf because of all of the rain. But at least we have two all weather fixtures to keep things going today and the Mike Murphy trained Ducal is fancied to win again in the 7 furlong handicap at 5:15 at Kempton.
The 4 year old bay gelding previously ran for Sir Mark Prescott before being bought for 20,000 guineas at Tattersalls Horses in Training sale last October. He has 7 runs for Sir Mark with all but one coming on the all weather. His best result was a win at Wolverhampton in a Maiden race over 7 furlongs.
A 7 furlong race tends to be a bit of a specialist distance and Ducal is quickly turning into a 7 furlong horse. He has run over the trip 7 times and has now won 3 times and been placed twice, including winning both of his last two runs which have been at Kempton. Kempton differs from the other all weather polytrack courses at Lingfield and Wolverhampton as it is right-handed and this clearly suits Ducal as he has now won twice from 3 times at the Sunbury venue.
His first run at the track was while he was still with Sir Mark Prescott when he finished 2nd over 1 mile, but failed to get up and tired inside the last 120 yards. His next run at the course came on 01 March for Mike Murphy. He has been given a nice break of over three months and clearly came back refreshed as he wore down Russian Ice in the closing stages to win by ½ length in what was a competitive Class 4 handicap run at a good pace. He ran again over 7 furlongs at Kempton on 28 March and although he was up 5lbs in the weights he went to the front 1 furlong out and ran on gamely to hold the 2nd placed horse by ½ length. His win was impressive as he was never really going at any stage in a race that was only run at a steady pace.
He has only been put up 3lbs for his last win and with the assistance of John Fahy in the plate again today, who has ridden him on all three runs for his new yard to date, he should not be to far away. His yard are in decent form with 2 winners from the last 8 runners and over a course and distance which clearly suit should go very close again today.