This can go to Jamie Snowden’s progressive PISGAH PIKE, who followed his easy win at Hexham with a near miss in a Listed handicap 23 days ago and sets a useful standard back in a novice event. Clear second best on the figures is the very well-related Hugos Other Horse, who looks interesting dropped back to 2m on his reappearance. Another to keep an eye on is triple 2m Flat winner Atomic Jack, who should have a future at this new discipline.
A tricky race in which the vote goes to HAB SAB, who recorded his breakthrough win under a trailblazing ride over course and distance in March. He is a big player if he can pick up where he left off after another break.
Kapsize ran well for a long way when third off a tumbling mark at Warwick and he’s feared most. Although, Magic River is on the same mark as for his Stratford win last summer and needs watching in the market on his return from a long absence.
Both Angel’s Whisper and Amelia’s Dance are interesting contenders off fair-looking marks on their handicap hurdle debuts. Meanwhile, while Flutiste has possibilities if he can build on his promising fourth in a big field last time.
However, the one that appeals most is PLENTY OF BUTTY. He proved something of revelation when justifying support in smooth style at Newton Abbot and may well be able to follow up off his revised mark.
David Bridgwater’s ENRICHISSANT has a 12lb rise in mark to deal with after 242 days off, but he found stacks of improvement with his runaway over 2m 4f at Huntingdon in February and still looks feasibly treated on that form. He gets the vote in his bid to make it 2-4 over fences. The main threat could come from Gateway To Europe, who made a good start to his chase career when runner-up at Fontwell last month and looks on a dangerous mark back in a handicap.
Constancio travelled strongly for a long way when runner-up in first-time blinkers at Bangor and he’s a key player on this switch back to quicker ground, while Sorbet was a good second on her handicap/seasonal debut at Warwick and is open to more progress. However, the vote goes to Gary Moore’s VISION CLEAR (NAP), who was only just caught in a higher grade over C&D last month and is on a similar mark today.
Preference is for SPEEDY CARGO, who made it fourth time lucky over fences when rallying well to beat a clear second at Cartmel in August and a 5lb rise for that win looks fair. Second choice is Moans Cross who turned things around with a close call at Huntingdon last month and is respected on his step up to a new trip.
Third on the list is another unexposed chaser in Granitic. He was runner-up off today’s mark at Wincanton on his penultimate run last season and needs watching in the market on his comeback.
A race named in honour of Josh Gifford, whose son Nick runs the unexposed ROSE OF AGHABOE. This seven-year-old mare is open to progress in staying handicaps this season and she’s taken to be a fitting winner.
Closely matched rivals Viking Ruby and Our Rockstar are major players on recent form, while My Mums Posh is an interesting type. Last year’s winner Jonjoela faces a harder task this time round, but she’ll be feared if strong in the betting.
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