Tiers 1,2 or 3 makes no difference, thanks to the excellent protocols put in place by the BHA, so the meetings at Newbury and Newcastle are on our screens for a great day’s racing.
Highlight at the Berkshire venue is the Ladbroke Trophy Chase at 3.00 which has a line up of 18, headed jointly by Vinndication & Kildisart at 7-1.
We are not at all sure that the first named’s jumping will hold up, but we are quite keen on the chances of the latter.
Ben Pauling‘s 8-y-o has been threatening to win a big pot for seemingly ages and hasn’t quite managed it, although it went very close in March, when beaten a neck in the Ultima Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
Not seen again until the end of last month, Kildisart ran an absolute stormer over hurdles at Wetherby, finishing third behind our selection Roksana, only giving best in the final half furlong.
Back over fences, cheekpieces back on and the Mighty Nico aboard, today may just be the day, so have an each way bet.
We are also sweet on the chances of Potterman from the Alan King yard.
Second season Novices have a good record in this race and Potterman was just touched off in the Badger Beer last time out. Early closing means it can run off the same mark today, which is 5lbs lower than in future and this 7-y-o is guaranteed to see out every yard. Take the 14-1 on offer.
Coverage starts at 1.50 with the Ladbrokes Handicap Hurdle in which we give a chance to two 10-1 shots, namely Amour De Nuit trained by Paul Nicholls and Howling Milan, which would have won a similar event last year but for going butt over mammary at the last. Back ’em both each way.
Next up is the Ladbrokes Intermediate Hurdle at 2.25, in which the market is headed by Marie’s Rock at 15-8.
Nicky Henderson‘s charge looked to be heading for the heights last season after winning both hurdle runs, the latest a Listed affair, but a slight stress fracture curtailed her progress and she has not been seen since last December. However, reports are good and a mark of 141 looks very workable, so we advise a win bet.
The Ladbrokes Handicap Chase at 3.35 ends the card and, in the absence of the overnight fav, we recommend an each way bet on The Russian Doyen at 9-2.
This is another horse getting going again after injury problems, having run just 4 times since winning a CD handicap off 138 in January last year, but two recent runs suggest that all is now well and, off 135, the 7-y-o looks a decent betting proposition.
Cameras are at Newcastle for two races, starting with the Grade 1 Betfair Fighting Fifth Hurdle which sees the reappearance of the reigning Champion Hurdler Epatante.
Frankly, we are not keen to take this one on and we’re not keen on backing it at even money either, so this is a ‘no bet’ race for us.
The Betfair Exchange Rehearsal Handicap Chase at 3.15 completes the telly coverage and we think Whatmore will win this one.
Just beaten at Ascot on come-back run, Henry Daly‘s 8-y-o must have a great chance of getting its head in front over fences for the first time since its debut 7 runs ago. 11-4 looks very fair and should be taken.
Now then, where is that Smokey Robinson album?
Kildisart 3.00 Newbury 1.5pts e/w @ 7-1 (6 places)
Potterman 3.00 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 14-1 (6 places)
Amour De Nuit 1.50 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 10-1 (4 places)
Howling Milan 1.50 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 10-1 (4 places)
Marie’s Rock 2.25 Newbury 4pts win @ 15-8
The Russian Doyen 3.35 Newbury 1.5pts e/w @ 9-2 (2 places)
Whatmore 3.15 Newcastle 3pts win @ 11-4