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The Nicky Henderson-trained bumper winner Go Chique retains potential despite her hurdle debut defeat but preference is for the penalised MARADA, who was an easy winner of a novice hurdle at Hereford last time out.
The top two trainers in the country go head to head with a couple of very useful chasers, and there isn’t much between them on form. PRECIOUS CARGO lacks a recent run and is unproven over this far, whereas his opponent has ticks in both those boxes, but he goes well fresh and promises to stay this far. Master Tommytucker’s jumping remains a concern and therefore preference is for the Henderson runner.
This weak novices’ handicap can go to SOMEKINDOFSTAR, who might have been stretched by 3m1f when running quite well in a higher-grade hurdle here last month and now drops back in trip for his chasing debut. The 7yo finished second in an Irish point in 2017. Good-ground point winner Loco Coco struggled to make an impact in slow-ground maiden/novice hurdles last season but ought to be more competitive in this.
Wild Max was badly hampered at the penultimate flight when fourth in a competitive race on last month’s handicap debut at Cheltenham and remains open to improvement but ROWLAND WARD (nap) also endured bad luck at Cheltenham on his latest outing and, if judged on the form of his Kempton win in December, he looks very interesting. Furthermore, Stuart Edmunds’ gelding might be seen to even better effect on today’s faster ground. Blacko and Namib Dancer also have good claims.
All of these arrive with some sort of question mark but NIGHTLINE ran well for a long way at Kempton last month when back from nearly a year off and Charlie Longsdon is a dab hand with veteran chasers. He gets the nod ahead of The Fresh Prince who was showing some sparkle in front until falling four out at Fakenham when last seen in March. Ten Sixty runs off his last winning mark and it will be interesting to see how he goes in the betting on this first outing since April 2017.
C&D winner PROJECT MARS succumbed to two strong-finishers after leading over the final flight at Market Rasen on Thursday but that still goes down as a very good effort and he gets the vote off the same mark here. That said, long-absent mare Her Dream makes her debut for Olly Murphy off a lowly mark and will need to be taken very seriously if solid in the betting. Akkapenko, Passing Shadow and Sweeping Rock are others to consider.
On his first start after a wind op, RAGAMUFFIN posted a good effort at Exeter last month. He still has low mileage and is selected in the hope he can build on that performance over today’s longer trip. Dollnamix is 0-13 over hurdles but he bumped into an improver when second over 2m3f here on his seasonal debut in September and must be considered off the same mark today. Handicap debutants Inawhilecrocodile and Poker Master are others to consider.
Shield Of Honour and Kiss My Face were placed in the same race at Market Rasen last month, while Silent Partner was placed at Market Rasen three days later. All three ought to be on the premises here too but ROMAN KNOWS has a good Flat pedigree and may provide Andrew Balding with a rare winner under jumps rules. Herbiers, who won in France in June, is also of interest.
The Racing Post’s tips at Huntingdon on Tuesday
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