Powerhouse trainer Francois Nicolle holds the key to this listed hurdle race for four-year-olds at Dieppe. He has declared four of the six entrants, and is surely going to collect with one of them.
BORN TO HOLD holds all the aces, as an unbeaten hurdler who is fast improving. A son of the Irish Derby second, Born To Sea, he sports the same colours as his illustrious father. He was good enough to win a couple of times on the Flat, and has won both starts over hurdles so far, dotting up by 11 lengths last time. Jockey Angelo Zuliani will be keen to kick on from his big-money win aboard L’Autonomie last week for the same yard.
The banker leg of the trixie is HELL BOY who has had his task made all the easier with the defection of Edgeoy. After taking his time to mature, he has come into his own since switched from the Francois Cottin yard, and would be chasing a five-timer here, only that he bumped into the classy seven-time winner Raffles Sun three starts ago.
He dotted up by 30 lengths last time, and could do something similar in this under-strength Grade 3.
Sticking with trainer Francois Nicolle again and the classy FARNICE should take a drop in class in his stride in this conditions race. This gelding is a five-time winner, including a couple of Grade 3 races, and has twice finished 4th at Grade 1 level also. While there are some interesting types in here, particularly the long absent Opium, Farnice has a gilt-edged opportunity for a confidence-boosting win here, provided he gets round (he has fallen on his last two starts).
*Prices correct at publishing but are subject to change