There’s a real mix of old friends and potential stars of the future on show at Chepstow on Saturday so here’s 4 who can hopefully make an impact.
Decent handicap hurdle at
A decent handicap hurdle and Remiluc is a grand old servant for Chris Gordon who hardly ever runs a bad race and was placed in the Betfair Hurdle in February on his last start.
Stimulating Song ran a good race at Fontwell and will be better for that run. Gunnery might just have things his own way a little up front and he may we’ll be able to take advantage of that.
Didtheyleaveuoutoo is the fascinating one – he could be very well handicapped. Nick Gifford has been among the winners lately so I am going to take a chance on him.
Boldmere was very unlucky at Wetherby where he had the race in the bag, before falling at the last. He won very nicely at Doncaster before that and is smart. With only 10 stone 8 lb on his back, he’s of interest.
Secret Investor has had a wind operation and if that brings out some more improvement and he can get back to the level he showed at Ayr when winning a Grade 2 contest, he could be overpriced in the market.
Ballyoptic won this race last year before going on to win the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby. He’s a lot higher in the ratings because of that and heads the weights on Saturday. That will make life difficult for him, but he sets a very good standard and is still probably the one to be on.
Fiddlerontheroof is a Grade One winner but was very disappointing at the Cheltenham Festival, when nearer last than first in the Supreme Novices Hurdle. He looked so good winning the Grade One Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown and also finished second in the Persian War Hurdle at this track first time out last season.
He’s looked a chaser in the making though, so it will be interesting to see how he gets on now.
Grand Sancy is another with good hurdles form and he has already won over fences at Fontwell. He finished second giving Fusil Raffles 3lb at Wincanton last year so there’s not much between them on form.
Dan Skelton’s Longhouse Sale has already won three times over fences, so this is a tidy race.
A cracker of a novice chase where Fusil Raffles sets a very good standard on the back of his win at Uttoxeter. He was given a patient ride that day by Daryl Jacob and it paid off as the others got weary and he swept through them at the end.
He looks like the step up In trip will suit to 2m 4f and this likeable sort has no penalty to carry. His fitness edge over the Tizzard and Nicholls runners sways me in his favour.
The feature race on the card is The Silver Trophy, Sir Psycho was a really good juvenile hurdler last season and it’s interesting that Paul Nicholls runs him here in an all-age handicap instead of the handicap confined four-year-old handicap on Friday.
Doubly Clever has been on a roll winning his last twice while Lightly Squeeze just missed out on a run at Newmarket in the Cesarewitch, so comes here instead. He still was in with a chance before falling in the Betfair Hurdle on his last start.
Flash the Steel was disappointing after he won this last season and ran ok Festival, even if he was unplaced.
The one I like is Beaufort West. He won two at the back end of last season at Fontwell and Chepstown after a wind operation, having looked very laboured when well beaten at the track last season.
A handicap mark of 129 looks good.
An ultra-competitive chase for my final pick on the card. I’m going to go for what will hopefully be a bit of value in last year’s winner, The Bay Birch.
She won this contest off a mark of 145 those 12 months ago and races on Saturday off a mark of 137. Matt Sheppard’s charge finished third on her seasonal debut at Warwick recently and looks a solid each-way play to follow up last year’s win.
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