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A novice hurdle where some of the field been very impressive. Lord Accord was looking for a hat-trick of wins before unseating Brendan Powell last time out. Nicky Henderson’s runner Ballingers Corner won her point-to-point and then made all to win her first rules start at Market Rasen.
She is certainly on an upward curve and possibly the one they need to beat, but the pick is ONLY THE BOLD. He has been a beaten favourite in his first two starts, but has been a staying on second on both occasions. Jockey Adam Wedge is riding well with a 26 per cent strike rate the last two weeks and another solid run from this horse could see it in the winner’s enclosure.
A mares novice hurdle where Fortunes Melody is a really interesting runner. She was running in Auteuil over slightly further when placed on her last three starts, but is having her first run for her new trainer Harry Fry and will be fancied to win on debut.
YAUTHYM has been placed on its four starts so far and was a staying on second last time out on ground described as ‘heavy’. With the going described as good to soft, that should help her chances. Jockey Paddy Brennan is flying with a 23 per cent strike rate and this horse can finally get its head in-front.
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Two course and distance winners line up and it should be between them at the finish. Poppa Poutine for the Twiston-Davies stable won two starts ago and a well beaten sixth last time out, when pushed along early under Tom Bellamy onboard. Sam Twiston-Davies takes the ride now so Poppa Poutine will be expected to run well.
However, TERRIERMAN will have a big say for the Skelton brothers as he also has course-winning form in 2019 but has yet to win since then. He was pulled up last time out when jockey Harry Skelton describing the gelding as ‘never travelling’. He is wearing first time blinkers, so should that produce a big improvement – he could get back to winning ways.
This maiden hurdle over 2m is a really strong race, with a host of runners in with chances. But, SUBLIME HEIGHTS really caught the eye when second on its first start at Plumpton. That was over 2m 4f and was well beaten, so dropping back in trip will really suit and he will be expected to go well.
But, the most interesting thing is the stats on the trainer Toby Lawes. He has had four runners in the last two weeks with three of them winning, so has a 75% strike rate. Also, the last couple of times he teamed up with jockey Tom Cannon they had a winner and a second.
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