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Irish point winner Aki Bomaye is an interesting recruit to racing under rules for Colin Tizzard, but useful bumper performer CHAMPAGNESUPEROVER came good over hurdles with a comfortable success at Ayr last month and has plenty of potential to build on that performance. Franco D’Aunou and Red Lion Lad should also feature.
Course and distance winner Sexy Lot was in very good form towards the end of last year and could still have more improvement to come, but slight preference is for PONIENTE. She ran well in defeat on last month’s handicap debut at Chepstow and gets another chance off the same mark here. Anightinlambourn opened her account with a win on good to soft ground last month and can play a part if coping with the slower conditions here.
This can go to low-mileage six-year-old LE TUEUR, who won over C&D in November and ran a big race in defeat on heavy ground at Chepstow last month. March Is On will be dangerous off his current mark if back on song and is feared most, but good cases can also be made for Oxwich Bay and Darksideoftarnside.
A very interesting novice chase. Fado Des Brosses was impressive last time and it is only the concession of weight to LIEUTENANT ROCCO that swings the verdict in favour of Nick Mitchell’s charge, who has really good placed form and looks likely to improve for this longer trip.
Nestor Park’s latest handicap second looks strong so he should also have a part to play, while Welsh Saint departed early on his chase debut but retains potential for this sphere based on his useful hurdle ability.
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A wind operation has proved successful for MADERA MIST (NAP), who improved to win at Cheltenham in December and can overcome an 8lbs rise in this lower-grade event. Chasing debutante Roseisaroseisarose also drops down from Class 3 company today and is feared most. Rollercoster won easily over hurdles on her stable debut in November and is next on the list.
Samuel Drinkwater’s GALLIC GEORDIE posted a much-improved performance when winning on his chase/handicap debut in December and, after only five career starts, there’s a good chance he can progress again. He gets the verdict ahead of Khairagash, with Champion Chase and Royal Act nominated as more speculative options to consider.
The obvious starting point is recent Bangor winner All Good Things, but he has gone up 7lbs so it might be worth taking him on with handicap hurdle newcomer YULONG MAGICREEF, who has Kevin Brogan taking 6lbs off. Cases can also be made for Definite Winner and The Wire Flyer.
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