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ITV Racing Saturday gets under way here with a handicap hurdle over an extended 3m. This is wide open. I’m going to take a chance with the old boy THE WORLDS END who is thrown in on his best form but who of course has not been running up to his best form of late. That said, Olly Murphy’s stable is going well and Adrian Heskin is on board so I’ll have a few quid each way.
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ITV are also on the Flat at Doncaster Saturday starting with this handicap over 7f. Very hard race to sort out. BOARDMAN is back on a very tasty mark now for Tim Easterby and Paul Hanagan and he was far from disgraced when last seen. That was in a big sprint at York when fifth behind Volatile Analyst and he kept on well over the 6f that day. He’s better at 7f so should have every chance. An eachway wager.
ITV have also got jumping at Wincanton on Saturday getting underway with this Grade 2 Rising Stars Novices’ Chase over 2m4f. This should be between MICK PASTOR and Faivoir and I’m very much in the former camp for Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden. The five-year-old is on a five-timer and has won well in small fields at Newton Abbot and Exeter. He should be up to this.
A Listed event here over 6f. KING’S LYNN deserves a tasty prize before the season ends and this is his chance for Andrew Balding and David Probert. My selection was a fine second at Ascot last time and of course with third in the Wokingham and seventh in the King’s Stand Stakes. He was unlucky in both of those. Fingers crossed this is his day.
Now a handicap chase over 2m5f. CAT TIGER is a well handicapped horse but he’s not quite able to do what we all want with David Maxwell on top! That said, Maxwell is perfectly capable and the champion trainer Paul Nicholls will have my hope fit enough. The distance is ideal as he doesn’t lack pace.
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Now a handicap hurdle over an extended 2m5f. WYNN HOUSE could be nicely handicapped here for Alan King and Tom Cannon. It’s first time out for the six-year-old mare but King horses don’t usually lack in fitness and she ended up in March with a decent enough second at Ludlow. Has to have an each way chance.
This is the big betting race of the day for many in the November handicap over 1m4f. SAM COOKE is not a well handicapped horse but he’s going to relish the conditions for Ralph Beckett and Rob Hornby, who have been Group 1 winners together this term. Sam loves the juice in the ground and stays well. He did really well on faster ground at York two starts ago.
A classy handicap chase here in the Badger Beer over 3m1f. Wide open heat. HURRICANE HARVEY is down in the weights but wasn’t totally disgraced at Chepstow las time. He was a good winner at Doncaster in 2020 and stays well and jumps allright. Fergal O’Brien has already had a great season as has Paddy Brennan, so every chance.
A conditions hurdle over 2m4f. Decent little heat this. LISNAGAR OSCAR has never been given the credit he deserves for winning the Stayers’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival and he has other runs which suggest he’s a pretty decent horse. He’s a big price here for Rebecca Curtis and Adam Wedge but he can go well fresh and if ready might just cause an upset.
Grade 2 company with the Elite Hurdle over 1m7f. No doubt SCEAU ROYAL is the the one to beat here for Alan King and Daryl Jacob. He’s just a very decent horse over fences and hurdles and with a rating of 158 will be hard to stop. Goshen is much harder to predict but clearly very talented. A good renewal.
Matt’s Saturday selections
Aintree 13:08 – The Worlds End (E/W)
Doncaster 13:25 – Boardman (E/W)
Wincanton 13:50 – Mick Pastor
Doncaster 14:05 – King’s Lynn
Aintree 14:15 – Cat Tiger
Wincanton 14:25 – Wynn House (E/W)
Doncaster 14:40 – Sam Cooke
Wincanton 15:00 – Hurricane Harvey
Aintree 15:20 – Lisnagar Oscar
Wincanton 15:35 – Sceau Royal
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