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Sunday’s card at Fontwell gets under way with a handicap chase over 2m 5f 135y and look for THE CROONER to continue to hit the right notes over the larger obstacles. Venetia Williams’ six-year-old has got winning form over hurdles and opened his account in this sphere with a gutsy three-quarters of a length victory in a Leicester handicap chase over 2m 4f.
His stamina was very much to the fore that day and it was no surprise to see Williams step the grey up in trip for his latest race, over course and distance 10 days ago. The Crooner and Cheque En Blanc pulled miles clear of the field before the latter just about got the better of the argument after a great duel between them to the line.
That effort suggested that there’s more to come from The Crooner over this trip and he still looks to be on a reasonable mark. Tom Scudamore has been firing in the winners lately and is a positive booking.
The feature race on the card is the National Spirit Hurdle, and this a Grade 2 over 2m 3f. A small but select field of six go to post, with McFabulous likely to go off a short-priced favourite following his impressive victory in the Relkeel Hurdle at Kempton last time out.
Brewinupastorm is a very versatile horse who romped home in a Taunton handicap hurdle on his latest appearance and is very much respected. But, a chance is taken with MOLLY OLLYS WISHES. The selection is improving at a very strong rate and put up a career-best in her latest run when she landed a hat-trick in a Listed mare’s race at Warwick.
Another step forward is needed here if she is to win her fourth race in-a-row. But, she put the highly-touted Pauls Saga in her place last time out, and with the Skelton team in such good form, Molly Ollys Wishes could be the value selection if the two market principles don’t bring their A game.
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The next race on the card is a Novices’ Hurdle over 2m 3f. BREWERS PROJECT can get back to winning ways here after being unfortunate to run into a good one last time out. Paul Nicholl’s seven-year-old made every yard of the running and justified short-priced favouritism when landing a maiden hurdle at Wincanton back in December. This big horse left the impression that there was plenty more improvement to come.
Brewers Project couldn’t overcome a penalty at Chepstow last time out, and was unlucky to run into Grumpy Charley, who looks a decent prospect. They pulled a fair bit away from the field and Brewers Project looks like he is more than capable of taking another step forward.
Fantastikas looks like it will be the main opposition, but he has also been unlucky with a string of second place finishes in his name. Nigel Twiston-Davies now drops him back significantly in trip for this, which makes me lean towards Brewers Project.
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