An added bonus for ITV viewers this weekend as we have the Peterborough Chase which has been added to the card on Friday on the back of the abandonment of Huntingdon last Sunday. We also have one race from Bangor on Dee where the ground will be very testing.
Arian has to shoulder a welterweight of 12 stone 3 lb and she is worse off at the weights with Nikap with Kieran Buckley taking 7lbs off. Nikap won at Uttoxeter last year on very soft ground and she will finish this race off well. Black Tulip loves to race aggressively and if she gets a loose on the front end could prove hard to peg back in a race where Paddy is paying the FIRST and SECOND as winners up to a £/€10 stake.
The Grade 2 Peterborough Chase is is a cracking race but takes on a different complexion now that it is run at Cheltenham and not its original slot at Huntingdon’s abandoned meeting last week.
This trip and track puts a bit more emphasis on stamina than Huntingdon and I’m not convinced that it will play to Top Notch strengths, one of Nicky Henderson’s two runners along with Mister Fisher. The latter struggled when conditions turned soft on his reappearance at this track last time and
Kalashnikov on the other hand, is well treated by the conditions of the race and handles soft ground. With the benefit of a run under his belt he looks the one to be on.
Robin Gold won last time under a brilliant ride from Bridget Andrews and the mare she beat, Midnightreflection came out and won easily at Plumpton. He will take all the beating in a disappointing-sized with that form having being boosted.
Storm Control was value far more than the winning margin suggested last time at this venue. He jumps and stays well and handles conditions, so is a very solid option. Harry Cobden will try and smuggle West Approach into the race. He finished third in this race last year, but he is becoming frustrating as a win-only prospect.
Irish challenger Court Maid won a super competitive handicap at Fairyhouse last time with loads in hand. She is a strong traveller and the way this race will be run should her.
Kingswell Theatre won at the track last time and conditions are similar, so there’s lots of reasons to think this lad should go well again. Beau Du Brizais doesn’t have the experience of the Scudamore runner, but showed an aptitude for the fences last time. With that run under his belt, he will be strip fitter this time and is my each-way pick.
Vive Le Roi is is turning into a real cliff horse for me but his handicap mark is getting dangerously attractive! However, while I’m tempted to go in again, the Dan Skelton-trained former County Hurdle winner Mohaayed ran a hell of a race last time at Aintree and is the one to be on.
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