Soyouthinksoagain left his previous hurdling form well behind when runner-up at Carlisle on his return to action in October, belatedly looking the horse he had in bumpers, and he built on that outing to go one better in good style at Stratford a week later, leading on the bridle after two out and asserting entering the straight, staying on well to win by five and a half lengths. He still looks well treated despite an 11 lb rise, and with further improvement a possibility, he gets the vote to follow up.
Caribean Boy, who signed off last campaign with a win at Haydock, picked up where he’d left off on his return to action at Newbury last month, showing a good turn of foot to get the better of Fiddlerontheroof in a Grade 2, plenty to like about the way he went about things considering it was just his third start over fences. He steps out of novice company for the first time here but is open to improvement and makes plenty of appeal.
It took Early Du Lemo longer than might have been expected to get off the mark over fences, but he proved himself on a good mark at the fifth attempt when landing a Lingfield handicap chase back in January 2019. He was well backed ahead of his reappearance at Sandown earlier this month, and he shaped as if retaining all his ability after almost two years off, looking the likely winner in the straight but just finding his stable companion in a determined mood. He still holds potential for further progress and he is not taken lightly with a run now under his belt.
This could very well come down to a straight shootout between Paisley Park and Thyme Hill, just as it did when the two met in the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury last month, the latter edging it by a length and a half. Paisley Park was conceding weight to his rival on that occasion however, and, as opposed to Thyme Hill, looked to be carrying condition beforehand. The two meet on level terms here, and with that run under his belt, Paisley Park gets the vote to reverse the form.
The Conditional ended last season with a game victory in the Ultima Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival, catching the eye with the way he travelled before rallying to lead inside the final furlong, and he returned to action with a cracking effort to finish third in the Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury last month, again travelling notably well. He is building up a really solid record in top staying handicaps and another bold bid is expected.
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Second to subsequent Tolworth winner Fiddlerontheroof at Sandown last season, Arrivederci looked potentially well-in ahead of his reappearance at Wetherby in October, and he duly proved that to be the case, impressing with both the way he travelled and found, forging clear in the run-in.
That form received a boost when the third home won at Ascot last month, and Arrivederci was in the process of doing his own bit for the form when departing three out at Haydock last time, looking sure to play a hand in the finish before coming to grief. He clearly remains open to improvement and could potentially still be on a good mark in the final Paddy Power Millionaire Chase Qualifier, so he gets the vote in an ultra-competitive handicap.
Timeform’s tips at Ascot on Saturday
More tips for Saturday
- Ruby Walsh’s six best bets at Ascot and Haydock on Saturday
- Paddy Power Millionaire Chase Qualifier Tips: Frank Hickey and Ruby Walsh’s selections
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