Plenty in with chances but the ones to focus on may be in-form top weight Millie Of Mayo, Liffeydale Dreamer, Jessiemac, Calliope and SWEET VINETTA. The selection is on the same mark as when winning this last year and has shown she can go well fresh.
Point winner Gold Clermont is of obvious interest on her hurdling debut and it would be no surprise to see her attract market support. However, preference is for FOSTERED PHIL (nap), who showed promise in bumpers before finishing a good second over C&D on his hurdling debut. Another hurdling debutant, Sea Prince, may fare best of the rest.
Getting back on good ground helped FARM THE ROCK when running his best race for a while here recently and he’s preferred to Sultans Pride, who has a race in him off his current mark. Artic Quest can also figure, provided he goes the right way after his belated return to action.
A competitive handicap in which the ones who make most appeal are the lightly-raced Exod’ela and top weight GLINGER FLAME. Nicky Richards’ gelding won three times here last year and is feasibly treated on his return to hurdling after a stint over fences. Pagero has good recent form to his name and will have his supporters but his handicap mark gives him a little to find.
An interesting field is headed by LUCKY FLIGHT after his win at Perth. Beat Box and Tabou Beach Boy also have chasing potential and are likely to go well.
Few of these have solid recent form, and last month’s surprise C&D winner Costly Dream could again be involved in the finish. Of the chasing debutants Peter’s Portrait makes the most appeal, but preference is for SPEAK OF THE DEVIL, who ran several decent races over fences last season and should be thereabouts if fit after an absence.
The Perth handicap in which King’s Wharf was third and GRAYSTOWN fourth looks a key piece of form. King’s Wharf is reliable and should be involved in the shake-up once more, but Graystown is three years younger and may finish in front this time if he can minimise the jumping errors. Last year’s third Orioninverness emerged from the doldrums to spring a surprise at Perth last week and could be a player again.
The Racing Post’s best bets at Hexham on Friday
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