Temple Lord can end year-long losing streak at Stratford
Temple Lord can end a near 12-month losing streak in the Pride Of Coventry Handicap Chase at Stratford on Sunday.
Jonjo O'Neill's charge has not got his head in front since winning at Worcester last August but his recent efforts and a slip back down the handicap suggest he could soon be back on top form.
The bare statistics do not really tell the whole story, as Temple Lord has only actually had six runs in the interim as he clearly prefers decent ground and was duly given a break during the winter months when the ground is supposed to be at its worst.
The eight-year-old only returned to action at the start of June, finishing a distant third behind The Romford Pele at Worcester when he was tried without any headgear at all.
He raced a bit lazily that day so it was no surprise to see the blinkers reapplied at Ffos Las on his next outing and while Temple Lord was only fourth there, he looked much sharper and that was undoubtedly a better effort.
A stronger pace that day may well have suited him better and the handicapper has seen fit to drop him a further 1lb, leaving him on a mark of 119 which is just a touch higher than his last winning perch.
Temple Lord will clearly have to improve again but is worth a shot in a race that could play to his strengths.
Broughtons Warrior made steady progress in four maiden starts and following a recent victory, he is worth supporting in the Pride Of Birmingham Handicap Hurdle.
He built on two previous placed efforts when scoring in what appeared to be a decent event at Southwell in May.
A sound early gallop brought out the best in Willie Musson's charge and a mark of 115 does not look too harsh.
Roc De Prince can take a starring role in the Action Glen Novices' Handicap Chase at Perth. The five-year-old will be having his first outing over fences in this event but having won over hurdles previously, he is clearly not without ability.
A blunder two flights from home cost him dearly when only third last time but up until that mistake, he had looked a likely winner and should not be discounted here.
Retrieve was a dual Group Three winner in Australia a few years ago and after failing to hit those kind of heights in Britain, he was an interesting addition to the jumps ranks over the winter.
He did not make quite the expected splash in his first couple of outings but did come good with a win at Stratford earlier this month.
John Ferguson is clearly keen to keep him on the go and Southwell's Nottingham City Transport Handicap Hurdle looks a decent opportunity, with Tony McCoy booked.
Heronry is the pick for Nicky Henderson in the Chad Novices' Chase.