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ITV racing Friday begins with his handicap over nearly 1m. CROWNTHORPE is not the worst drawn and might be able to do something here off a mark of 89. It’s been sometime since the Richard Fahey-trained gelding won, but this is a horse who loves some juice in the ground and he has some decent back form – including a win at York in testing conditions. He might go well here and have place claims for Paul Hanagan.
ITV also show one jumps race in this handicap chase over 3m and there is not much to inspire here! LARKBARROW LAD has been in good shape and should put up a bold show for the master trainer Philip Hobbs and Tom O’Brien.
He’s run well over this sort of trip at Ludlow, Exeter and Newbury recently and the drop of 1lb for his decent last effort looks fair enough to me!
Now the Group 2 Huxley Stakes over an extended 1m 2f for older horses. ARMORY goes on soft ground and really should be too good for this lot for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore.
The Cox Plate runner-up – once fourth in the Irish 2000 Guineas and third in an Irish Champion – is very hard to oppose as he has much more class than these. The ground should not be an issue either.
The big betting race of the week in the Chester Cup Handicap over an extended 2m 2f. RESHOUN might not be the strongest stayer in this line up, but he did this column a favour at Newbury last term at big odds and I will chance him again.
The Ian Williams-trained runner loves soft ground and has a decent draw to go from in stall five. Andrea Atzeni takes the mount and while he’s up 2lbs from that Newbury run, he must have every chance of at least getting in the places.
This is a conditions race for three-year-olds+ over 5 furlongs, where it’s impossible to oppose EL ASTRONAUTE, who looks to be chucked in under 9st 10lbs. The old boy makes his seasonal debut, but he loves this track and ground and with a BHA rating of 106, should be too good for this lot for John Quinn and Jason Hart.
Finally, a handicap over an extended 1m 2f, where ALTERNATIVE FACT will have to be better than ever first time out to score off a mark of 96, but he should still put up a good effort. Trained by Ed Dunlop and ridden by Ryan Moore, my hope is ideally suited by 10 furlongs on softish ground and on that basis, there is hope for a huge run if ready on debut.
So best of luck and pray for Yeeehaaas. You hear me Paddy?
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- Horse Racing tips: Mick Fitzgerald’s lively Lucky 15 for Friday’s ITV races
- Horse Racing tips: Jason Weaver’s 5 to thrive at Chester on Friday
- Horse Racing tips: Through the card at Chester on Friday with Timeform