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Monkey can do the business at Catterick

PUNTING night owls can be richly rewarded if CLOUD MONKEY does what is expected of him at Catterick.

The gelded son of Marju made a relatively strong impression upon his return from a long absence in April and should be much fitter for the Leslie Petch Handicap.

Cloud Monkey had been sidelined since September 2014 but looked the essence of vitality with a most encouraging display over this course and distance.

Martin Todhunter's inmate did not look too happy with his lot going into the stalls, but he soon gathered a decent head of steam from off the pace.

Fitness told a little late on as he could not sustain the challenge, but Cloud Monkey still did really well to finish fourth, beaten just two and a half lengths by the winner, Pertuis, whom he meets again but on more favourable terms.

The five-year-old has not won since his days in Ireland, when he struck on his debut at Dundalk for Willie McCreery, but he has slipped to a most generous mark.

He also demonstrated at Catterick last month that he would not require too much improvement from his seasonal bow to win a small race like this.

HEAD SPACE is a name to consider in the Genting Casino Brighton Blackjack Handicap at Brighton.

The seven-year-old gelding did well enough on the all-weather earlier this year, despite having failed to get his head in front, yet took a bigger step in the right direction at Goodwood a week ago.

Having his first spin since March, Michael Attwater's gelded son of Invincible Spirit showed decent pace in a tight six-furlong handicap to finish fifth, just two and a quarter lengths in arrears of top spot.

Head Space is not one to get too heavily involved with, but he enjoys fast-ground sprinting and is now 2lb lower than when he tasted victory at Kempton last autumn.

That run at Goodwood, in a weaker race, ought to have brought him on quite a bit, too.