One More Fleurie was beaten only by a really well-treated rival on his handicap debut at Hereford last month, and he is expected to gain compensation here. This step up in trip is expected to suit the unexposed five-year-old, while Charlie Todd has been among the winners of late and claims a valuable 6lb.
Blue Laureate was a useful stayer on the Flat and shaped with some promise on his hurdling debut at Warwick last month. He might just have needed that outing on his first start for seven weeks, he is entitled to come on for the experience and is expected to make his class tell here.
Dashel Drasher unseated his rider at the first fence in a Grade 2 at Newbury on Friday, but he had jumped well on his chase debut at the same course and can quickly make amends for last week’s blip. He was an extremely likeable sort over hurdles and rattled up a four-timer in that sphere, progressing with each run and showing a good attitude under pressure. He was unable to fend off Champ on his chase debut but there was no shame in that, and he is expected to get off the mark over fences here
Marie’s Rock was a convincing winner of a bumper on debut at Ffos Las and looks a good prospect for novice hurdles. She was well supported in what looked a strong race of its type at Ffos Las and showed a pleasing cruising speed to ease into contention before readily asserting in the final furlong. Nicky Henderson has his string in excellent form, and Marie’s Rock can provide the trainer with another winner.
Cobolobo was only just beaten on his chasing debut/reappearance last year by Kilbricken Storm (the previous season’s Albert Bartlett winner) and is undoubtedly on a good mark based on that form. He failed to meet expectations on his return at Cheltenham in October, but he reportedly had a breathing problem, so the application of a tongue tie could help, and he is worth another chance to cash in on a lenient mark. The presence of excellent conditional Jonjo O’Neill jnr is also a positive.
Better Getalong has won twice and finished second twice on his first start of the campaign, so the best time to catch him could be when he’s fresh. He returns from a nine-month absence with the Nicky Richards yard in flying form, and he chased home a well-handicapped rival from a 2lb higher mark over this course and distance last year. His claims are clear based on that form and the lightly-raced eight-year-old can strike on his return.
12:50 One More Fleurie
13:20 Blue Laureate
13:55 Dashel Drasher
14:25 Marie’s Rock
15:30 Better Getalong