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Aljam' can beat Newbury traffic to spring Surprises

Roger Varian's Aljamaaheer will need to win the Dubai Duty Free Full of Surprises Handicap at Newbury on Friday if he is to fulfil his lofty entries later in the season.

The Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned colt won his only race in the manner of an above-average newcomer last season.

Probably to the surprise of Varian, Aljamaaheer was handed a handicap mark of 88 so rather than having to throw him in the deep-end in one of the Guineas trials this week, Varian can take a lower route.

Of course, if he gets beaten off such a rating he has no right lining up in the Guineas in a couple of weeks, for which he is just a 20/1 shot, or the Derby in early June.

Despite running green on his debut at Yarmouth, once he finally knew what was required he showed a really smart turn of foot.

The runner-up, Mezzotint, went on to win his next two starts to give the form some substance and while Richard Hannon's Usain Colt will make a race of it, he is not held in the same regard.

Varian can double up with the promising Ektihaam in the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup Conditions Stakes.

First time out might be the time to catch Lui Rei in the Dubai Duty Free Handicap.

Night Carnation could have a big year and can start the season with a bang in the EBF And Whitsbury Manor Stud Lansdown Fillies' Stakes at Bath.

The Scottish Grand National meeting gets under way at Ayr and Nicky Richards' Noble Alan can defy a big burden in the Hillhouse Quarry Handicap Chase.

At Fontwell, Emmaslegend can win the John Smith's Supporting CICRA Novices' Chase while Southwell's tfrost.co.uk Suppliers To Horse Racing Open Hunters' Chase can go to Alvarado.