PAUL HANAGAN can play a starring role on both sides of the Pennines today as he takes in an afternoon programme at Haydock Park before winging his way across the M62 to this evening's fixture at Pontefract. His efforts looks likely to be rewarded with at least one winner and possibly as many as half-a-dozen.
The former Malton-based champion starts at Haydock aboard Mark Johnston's Insaany in the PHS Group Handicap and can make a flying start to his double-stint. The Middleham colt won at Nottingham in fine style a fortnight ago and promises to be equal to a 7lb rise in his rating.
It is anyone's guess how good Hanagan's mount, Markaz is in the EBF Stallions PHS Washrooms Maiden Stakes, but this John Hills-trained newcomer has a smart pedigree and is by the speedy Dark Angel, who gets lots of juvenile winners. It would be no surprise if he makes a bold bid.
Iftaar makes plenty of appeal for Hanagan in the PHS Waterlogic Classified Stakes. A Brighton winner in maiden company, the Charlie Hills-trained three-year-old is on a mark of 78 and in this race, confined to 0-80 performers, he commands considerable respect.
Tanqeya will be Hanagan's mount in the PHS Treadsmart Handicap and this once-raced colt is a fascinating runner on his comeback outing.
Trained by Richard Hannon for Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, Hanagan's employer, who also owns his other Haydock mounts, Tanqeya won his one and only race last season at Lingfield in October. He is into his first handicap off a mark of 77, which looks fair and he is well worth a second look.
Hanagan will be already in his car and on the motorway by the time the final race at Haydock gets underway, which will be just as well as he is required at Pontefract to ride nap selection Kasb in the featured EBF Stallions Youngsters Stakes, which carries £18,000 in prize money.
A good winner at Newbury on his debut when he started at 10-1, the John Gosden-trained juvenile, a son of Arcano, can get the better of four previous winners here and confirm himself a smart youngster.
Westow trainer Paul Midgley has his horses in excellent heart and Line Of Reason could be another winner for him in the Constant Security Services Handicap.
Although he needs to step up on his two unplaced efforts this season, Line Of Reason should now be approaching his peak and he returns to a course and distance where he has scored in the past. He provides Hanagan with yet another winning chance.
Aramist looks sure to go well in the Constant Security Serving Yorkshire Racing Handicap.
Trained by Alan Swinbank near Richmond, the North Yorkshire gelding won in surefooted fashion at Thirsk on his reappearance a couple of weeks ago. He looks a stronger and more mature this year than he was last season and it would be no surprise to see him follow-up under Ben Curtis.
Sheriff Hutton trainer Mark Walford has found a good opportunity for Missy Wells to open her account in the Alamo Business Systems Fillies' Handicap.
The three-year-old has finished second three times in a row this season, at Newcastle, Southwell and most recently at Doncaster. She can go one better here under Jason Hart, another rider who will be undertaking the Haydock-Pontefract double stint.
At Haydock, Hart boasts a winning chance on Lord Franklin in the IJF 50th Anniversary Handicap.
Eric Alston's five-year-old finished a creditable fourth to Ted's Brother at Hamilton on his latest start and may not need to improve much on that effort to promote himself to the winning groove.
2.00 Insaany, 2.30 Markaz, 3.05 Iftaar, 3.40 Lord Franklin, 4.15 Tanqeya, 4.50 Principle Equation.
6.30 Cravat, 7.00 Aramist, 7.30 Kasb (NAP), 8.00 Line Of Reason, 8.30 Missy Wells, 9.00 Boy In The Bar.
Today's other meetings: Goodwood, Yarmouth, Musselburgh and Towcester.
Tomorrow's meetings: Beverley, Cartmel, Catterick, Ffos Las, Goodwood and Haydock.