Horse Racing Tips: Matt Chapman’s top picks for Friday’s Aintree action

Matt's back in the ring for another swing on Day 2 of the Grand National Festival.

Matt Chapman

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*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change

13:45 Highway One O Two (each way)

A Grade 3 handicap hurdle over 2m4f. HIGHWAY ONE O TWO had been in pretty desperate shape until he bouced back to form with a win at Taunton two runs ago and he kept up the good work with a second in the Lanzarote Hurdle at Kempton. That brings his mark back up to 133, but he was once a 146-rated animal and if he continues the revival for Chris Gordon and Tom Cannon he must have eachway claims.

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14:20 Jonbon

ITV Racing Friday gets under way here with the Grade 1 Top Novices’ Hurdle over an extended 2m. I’ll be very surprised if JONBON doesn’t hack up here for Aidan Coleman and Nicky Henderson. The expensive relation to Douvan was unbeaten until being smashed by Constitution Hill in the Supreme. I was stunned he went from the front that day and if ridden with more restraint he should be far too good for this lot.

14:55 L’Homme Presse

Another Grade 1 here in the Mildmay Novices’ Chase over an extended 3m. A small but select field. L’HOMME PRESSE scampered clear of Ahoy Senor in the Brown Advisory at Cheltenham and can see off Bravemansgame for Charlie Deutsch and Venetia Williams. I wasn’t totally sure about my selection until the Festival, but I loved the way he picked up once asked to go clear and he’s clearly very good indeed.

15:30 Saint Calvados (each way)

Grade 1 company again for the Marsh Chase over nearly 2m4f. SAINT CALVADOS was hopeless at Ascot last time but I’ll giver him one more chance with a few quid on each way for Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden. My hope returned in decent shape – having been lightly raced recently – when third and not staying in the King Goerge on Boxing Day, That suggested he still has some ability left and he’s big odds here if returning to form.

16:05 Senior Citizen (each way)

Over the Grand National fences for the Topham Handicap Chase over an extended 2m5f. SENIOR CITIZEN has been creeping up the handicap ratings but must have eachway chances for Adrian Heskin and Alan King. The Grand Sefton runner-up has since finished a fine third behind Paint the Dream at Newbury although never being placed to challenge that day. Has great place claims.

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16:40 Crystal Glory (each way)

This is the Grade 1 Sefton Novices’ Hurdle over an extended 3m. Far from a vintage renewal on paper. CRYSTAL GLORY was no match for Hillcrest at Haydock last time and was defeated at Newcastle the time before that. However, he looks a strong stayer for Nicky Richards and that means he has fine eachway claims for Sean Quinlan. Conditions are ideal for a big run.

17:15 Severance

The card closes off ITV with a handicap hurdle for conditionals and amateur riders over an extended 2m. SEVERANCE has had a wind operation since a fine third at Kelso and that might well allow him to get into the mix under Kevin Brogan who takes off 3lb for Ben Pauling.

So best of luck and pray for Yeeehaaas. You hear me Paddy?

Aintree tips on Friday

13:45 Highway One O Two (each way)
14:20 Jonbon
14:55 L’Homme Presse
15:30 Saint Calvados (each way)
16:05 Senior Citizen (each way)
16:40 Crystal Glory (each way)
17:15 Severance

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change

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