This doesn’t look a strong maiden hurdle and it should go to NADA TO PRADA. She was a beaten favourite on her hurdles debut at Hexham but that is still the best form on offer and there could be more to come on her first start since wind surgery. Franigane is open to improvement on hurdles debut and might prove the best alternative, with Just No Risk next on the list.
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Don Herbager returned from a long absence with a close call on his chase debut at Lingfield last week and is a big player if he can repeat the form off the same mark here. Both Little Red Lion and Lamanver Bel Ami scored over hurdles last time and are interesting contenders on their switch to fences. However, top of the list is ROBIN OF SHERWOOD, who is on a roll after his 3m chase wins here in his last two starts and may well be able to strike again under a penalty to complete the hat-trick.
Useful Flat stayer Blue Laureate just about sets the standard on his switch back to hurdling but this trip is probably sharper than ideal for him, and slight preference is for the returning MR GREY SKY, who was unbeaten in two bumpers and has plenty of scope for progress upped to 2m4f on his second run over hurdles. Others who need checking in the market are impressive point winner Lilith and the well-bred newcomer Gladiateur Allen.
A tricky race in which the vote goes to the well-handicapped CATAMARAN DU SEUIL, who ended last season with a good second in similar conditions at Leicester and is a big player if he can pick up where he left off. The pick of the opposition could be Hill Sixteen, who is open to further progress over fences this term and looks an interesting contender on his first run for Nigel Twiston-Davies.
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Several have possibilities but the most striking contender is the well-related 6yo EXPLOITEUR (nap), who chased home a subsequent winner at Bangor on his handicap/seasonal debut last month and is open to further progress on this step back up to an extended 2m5f. Jonjo O’Neill’s Sermando should have more to offer this season and he’s feared most at this new trip on his return to action. Others with each-way claims are Samson’s Reach and Eaton Hill.
Several of these have good marks to exploit on past efforts but this can lie between JURYS OUT and Game Line. The top weight looked for a moment as if he might win at Newton Abbot last month but he was just found out by an even stronger stayer over 3m2f. He should have more to come at this shorter trip, though Game Line is a worthy rival after his close call at Stratford. Silent Man is also worth considering on his debut for Tom Lacey.
Anthony Honeyball, who’s an excellent 29-93 (31%) in these races over the past five seasons, is enjoying a fine November, with five winners from 14 runners, including a bumper newcomer. In SWINCOMBE FLEAT, who’s a sister to useful dual bumper winner/hurdler Master Debonair, he has another likely looking type. My Keepsake, who’s from a family her trainer knows well, is an obvious danger now handed a stiffer test after getting done for toe when favourite on her debut.
The Racing Post’s tips at Ffos Las
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