Byline: Killer angles on today's racing with Graeme Rodway
?Kodicil looks to have been laid out for a repeat victory 5.20 Ripon The six-year-old made all when easily landing this race last year by
three and a half lengths and appears to have been peaked for a repeat bid after two runs this season.
Mark Walford's gelding had a successful campaign over hurdles last winter, but has generally been out of form on the Flat and his BHA rating has plummeted to the same mark as when successful last year.
However, he looked in need of the run when last of four on his return from more than four months off at Thirsk two starts ago and showed promise when fourth in a hot 2m1f handicap at Pontefract last time. He was well beaten but did best of the front-runners in a race run at a strong gallop.
He acts on any ground and should be sharper again with the cheekpieces retained.
?Little Belter's form is stacking up well 3.05 Ripon Tom Dascombe's colt has run into some smart types in his three starts and was beaten four and a half lengths by last week's valuable York sales race winner Mubtaghaa on his debut in a 5f maiden at Nottingham in June.
The two-year-old was unable to build on that when tenth at Chester next time, but it's worth putting a line through the run as he was drawn widest of all in stall 11. He bounced back to form when fourth at Haydock last time in a race that could hardly have worked out any better.
Little Belter was beaten nine and a half lengths, but the impressive six-length winner Faydhan is currently 12-1 third favourite for next year's 2,000 Guineas and the runner-up Dutch Connection has won twice since, including the Group 3 Acomb Stakes at York last week.
The third landed a Leicester maiden next time before going on to win a competitive Kempton nursery off a mark of 79 and a strict interpretation suggests Little Belter could be thrown in on his nursery debut off just 72.
Dascombe (right) has a healthy 21 per cent strike-rate (4-19) with juveniles at the track in the last five seasons and Little Belter looks sure to appreciate this significant ease in class.
?A wide draw might not be a negative if it's soft at Epsom (3.25) It's usually a disadvantage to be drawn wide on the round course but there's been plenty of rain in the vicinity of the Surrey track and when the ground is on the soft side the runners often swing wide to race on the stands' side.
With that in mind, those draw high could be well placed to bag the favoured rails berth when they get into the straight and Huntsmans Close (drawn 11) is a prime candidate in this 6f handicap.
Roger Charlton's gelding ran a cracker when third behind this afternoon's rival Swiss Cross over course and distance two starts ago. That effort can be upgraded as he tried to come from off the pace in a race run at a slow early gallop.
Huntsmans Close built on that when sixth in the Stewards' Cup consolation at Glorious Goodwood last time and would have gone a lot closer but for finding trouble in running when trying to weave his way through.
He acts well with cut in the ground and looks potentially well treated off the same mark.
'Strict interpretation of the form suggests he could be thrown in on his nursery debut off just 72'