Bowen launches five-strong Summer Plate challenge

PETER BOWEN launches a five-strong challenge as he bids for a second successive victory in the Summer Plate at Market Rasen today.

The Haverfordwest handler claimed the prize with Yes Sir last year and also sent out Ballycassidy to claim top honours in 2003.

The latter takes up the challenge again today as he bids to add further lustre to his already impressive record in the race.

“Ballycassidy has a really good record in the race, he’s won it as well as finishing second and third,” said Bowen.

“He’s in good form, but I wouldn’t have thought he’d be the best of the five.”

Bowen also sends veteran performer Take The Stand, Lankawi, Iron Man and Tommy Spar for the extended two-mile-six-furlong feature.

He rates Lankawi, who finished second in decent events at Aintree and Perth last term, and recent Stratford first and third, Iron Man and Tommy Spar, as his best chances.

“I would have said Lankawi might go well as he’s a progressive horse and he ran a very good race at Aintree last season. You would have to give him a chance on that run,” Bowen added.

“Take The Stand is getting on a bit now and he hasn’t been right for a while. He’s a had a lot of niggly problems and we hope he’s right now.

“Tommy Spar is in very good form and he could be very well handicapped tomorrow, while Iron Man was a winner last time and would have quite a good chance.

“Hopefully they all have chances and they would probably prefer better ground but if it were to turn a bit, Lankawi could handle it.”

David Pipe is also well represented with previous race victor Tango Royal and Grade One winner It Takes Time both in the field.

Tango Royal claimed the race in 2005 and while he has not scaled the same heights recently, Pipe is hopeful of a bold show after the pair finished in the places at the track last time.

“They are both in good form but they aren’t getting any younger – they have been fantastic horses to have in the yard for so many years, though,” Pipe said.

“They have both been working as well as they always used to and they took each other on at the track last time and ran well enough. It Takes Time did everything but win that day and Tango went well too in third.

“Tango Royal won this race a couple of years ago and I think they would both have each-way chances and they will handle the good ground, if it stays that way.

“Tango Royal is a bit lower than when he won but they have both dropped down the handicap and they aren’t getting any younger.”

Champion trainer Paul Nicholls sends out Hoo La Baloo and Nippy Des Mottes as he tries to supplement the victory of Dorans Gold in 2001.

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