sport

Crate pair off to Lingfield

Elusivity looks to begin a revival with new trainer Peter Crate when he lines up in the Bookmakers.co.uk Handicap at Lingfield on Saturday.

While Surrey-based Crate believes his purchase at Tattersalls Autumn Sales might need a little more time to reach his peak, he is optimistic of a decent show.

The former Brian Meehan-trained sprinter was taking on such top-class speedsters as Sole Power, Spirit Quartz and Moviesta in Pattern races during the last turf season, but has seen his rating dip since June from 104 to 94.

"Elusivity is coming back from a break and I'm sure we'll see better from him going forward, but he's been pleasing me at home," said Crate.

"He's a very nice horse, but I think he'll be better after a couple of runs.

"He's going to take a bit of time to come to hand and I'm looking to have a turf campaign with him early in the year on softer ground.

"He's in good form and he's really pleasing me. I'm sure he's going to be one of those horses that could shock me because he has dropped a fair way in the handicap.

"He did a piece of work last week and was impressive, but I wouldn't be over-selling him for Saturday.

"I bought him at Tattersalls three and a half months ago. I went up there with the sole intention of buying him. He was one that stood out for me in the catalogue and I was fortunate enough to purchase him.

"We let him off for a month. He's been back in work a couple of months and he's ready for run, though I think there will be better to come from him later in the year."

Crate reports his other runner, Picansort, in fine shape, but would be more bullish of his chances if this race was over the minimum trip and not six furlongs.

"Picansort is in excellent health. Subject to him seeing the six furlongs out, I'm hopeful of a good run," he said.

"He's a five-furlong specialist. There's nowhere for him to go at five at the moment. There isn't a five-furlong race until March 1.

"I'm having my hand forced to go here, but he's in fantastic form."

Karl Burke is also happy with Rivellino, who warmed up for this test with an emphatic success at Wolverhampton three weeks ago.

"Rivellino is in great order and has come on again from his win at Wolverhampton. I am happy with the draw in eight and I expect him to run very well," said the Middleham trainer.

"We have always thought a lot of him, but he is quite a slow-maturing horse and I think 2014 could be a big year for him if he stays sound."

Whaileyy has to give weight all round as he returns from a seven-month break.

Trainer Marco Botti said: "He hasn't run for a while. He's had a break and his best form for us was on the all-weather so we know he handles the surface.

"In my opinion, he's quite high in the handicap, but we have to start somewhere.

"He's fresh and well, so we hope he runs well."

Perfect Pasture is chasing an outstanding sixth win on the spin for the Mick Easterby operation.

Owner-breeder Jean Turpin said: "It's all a bit in the lap of the gods.

"Mick has been very happy with him since he last won at Kempton and we are obviously hoping for the best.

"We've had some nice horses, but I think this one is the best."