Flic Ou Voyou by no means gave himself a hard race at Chepstow on Friday and would be tough to beat if turned out again with his penalty. If he is absent, though, HONEST EXCHANGE is probably the one to be with as he ran nicely behind a talented horse at Exeter on his rules debut. The Mick Preston is next best, with Stormy Flight the other outstanding candidate.
Several of interest, not least Glajou who was dog-tired on his British debut on heavy ground at Taunton but is likely to fare better on this more suitable going. CHESS PLAYER looked to have plenty of pace when having a hopeless task as it turned out in his only start in an Ayr bumper and he looks a promising type for hurdles. Winning pointers Striking A Pose, A Distant Place and Press Your Luck are all worth a market check
This is a fascinating contest and hopefully not too hair-raising where MASTER TOMMYTUCKER‘s jumping is concerned, although that cannot be guaranteed. He is a fine sight when he negotiates the fences safely. Al Dancer is the other class act and just preferred to Tidal Flow as the one most likely to profit if the selection again fluffs his lines.
He was running for the first time in ten months at Warwick 19 days ago and, having shown up well for a long way, LAUGHARNE can show the benefit of that outing today. He is preferred to Oscarsman, who could have untapped staying potential, with the in-form Sammylou third choice despite being 5lb out of the handicap.
Point winner OSCAR ASCHE brings potential to this chase/seasonal debut and Rebecca Curtis’s horses have been running well of late. Rosserk Abbey is second choice on the back of a solid second at Warwick, with Uttoxeter third Jersey Bean next on the list.
He’s not the only unexposed one in the field, but HAWK’S WELL (NAP) shaped with significant promise in some good novice hurdles last season and looks very interesting on today’s handicap debut. He gets the nod ahead of Emphatic Qualm, who also makes his handicap debut here. Merry Milan has higher mileage but he ran quite well last month after a break.
A high-class race of its type for this time of year. STORMY IRELAND was very good on her day over hurdles and will be tough to conquer with her mares’ allowance if accurate in her jumping.
Eldorado Allen ran his best race last season first time back and he could be the danger, though Highway One O Two, Stolen Silver and Zanza are also strong candidates.
The most obvious answer is Paul Nicholls’ new recruit POZO EMERY, who has a good pedigree and made a promising Irish point debut in January. One For You, Optimise Prime, Rockingham South and Ewood Park are all interesting newcomers from respected stables. Given Olly Murphy’s excellent bumper strike-rate, the last-named is feared most.
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