While he is likely to improve when stepped up to a mile and a quarter plus in time, I will be surprised if Courtside doesn't go very close on his handicap debut at Chelmsford on Wednesday. Officially rated 69, the gelded son of Siyouni lines up in the 0-70 three year old handicap over a mile at 3.20 at the Essex track. David Simcock's charge ran twice at Newmarket as a juvenile before reappearing at Chelmsford last month. A staying on fifth in a novice stakes, he was beaten eleven lengths but the comfortable winner Mutafani followed up by four lengths under a penalty at Thirsk on Tuesday. He was rated 85 prior to today's run. Bought for €155,000 at the breeze-ups last year, Courtside is reunited with Jamie Spencer and it will be disappointing if he doesn't go close before tackling longer distances in due course. At the time of writing, he is top priced at 9/4 but I expect him to shorten up considerably.
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