Nathaniel Lacy & Partners Solicitors Novice Hurdle

A strong renewal this year and will hopefully be very informative in regards to the Cheltenham Festival. The market is headed by Gaillard Du Mesnil, who despite being well beaten on his first start over hurdles. Stuck himself firmly in the Ballymore picture with a win that oozed class on his next start.

The one concern you could have for him going into this race is the possibility of him not staying. …


Following on from my Ante-post columns last week, I have decided that it’s something I would like to bring each and every Wednesday (time permitting).

This weekend I will be covering two races from Haydock and Ascot. Haydock hosts a competitive Grade 3 Handicap Hurdle and the weekend’s main event the Grade 1 Betfair Chase. And, at Ascot, I will be covering the Grade 2 Chanelle Pharma Chase followed by the Grade 2 Coral Hurdle.

14:05 Ascot — Chanelle Pharma Chase (Grade 2)

Despite being a small field its very high-class renewal of the race, just the four runners but the lowest-rated horse in the field is Grade…


14:25 Cheltenham — Shloer Chase (Garde 2)

Sunday’s meeting is all geared around the 14:25, the Shloer Chase. A Grade 2, 2m chase which in recent years has been won by the likes of Uxizandre, Sprinter Sacre and Fox Norton.

The race in recent years has seen depleting field sizes, in the past 3 years they have been as big as 6 and as small as 4. This year looks no different with only 7 runners currently lining up.

Here is a runner-by-runner guide to the Shloer Chase, please note that although I will try my best to find the winner. …


Day two of the November meeting, the main event is the Paddy Power Gold Cup and I’ve decided to do a small piece looking into as many of the runners as possible. Please note that although the aim is to find the winner early on there is no guarantee that the horses selected will turn up for these races and this should only be used as a guide to help you pick out the winner.

14:15 Cheltenham — Paddy Power Gold Cup (Grade 3 Handicap)

A brilliant renewal of the race, in my opinion, there looks to be a good blend of seasoned handicappers and horses who wouldn’t look out of place in graded company. I will start by going through the field runner by runner and pulling out horses who I think don’t fit the bill.

Saint Sonnet — Paul Nicholls — 5yr old (g)

Saint Sonnet is the unexposed horse in the field, having 8 starts over in France he won 4 of them. He’s had just the two starts in Britain, the first being a low key Novice race at Catterick. He won as you would’ve expected before heading to the…


The second meeting at Cheltenham this season is a cracker with 11 Listed & Graded contests on show. Here are my early thoughts on some of the races. Please note that although the aim is to find the winner early on there is no guarantee that the horses selected will turn up for these races and this should only be used as a guide to help you pick out the winner.

Friday 13th November — Countryside Day

14:25 Cheltenham — Novice Chase (Class 2)

Race number three on the card is a 2m4f Novice Chase which looks certain to cut up. I expect some notable NR’s will pop up, starting with Fusil Raffles…


13:45 York (Sky Bet Handicap) — Zabeel Champion 7/4 2.5pt Win

The opening contest from York on Day three, It looks all to easy to me and I will take Zabeel Champion to carry on improving.

Marginally denied when going for the hat-trick at Goodwood, he didn’t look in love with the track and looked as if today’s step up in trip would really suit.

Outpaced in closing 2-furlongs he found top gear late on, finishing strong only managing 2nd on the day. A reproduction of that effort would probably be good enough to feature and now tackling further there is every chance he could be an even better performer.

14:15 York (Lonsdale Cup Group 2) — Dashing Willoughby 3/1 1pt Win

Finally…


14:15 York (Acomb Stakes Group 3) — Gear Up 11/2 0.5pt E/W (3 Places)

Race two from York’s Ebor meeting, a tricky 2-year old Group 3 with the majority of these coming in off the back of just one run.

I will be siding with the course and distance winner Gear Up, to get the meeting off to a winning start for trainer Mark Johnson. He played up at the start on debut, reportedly getting loose prior to the off.

I’m a big fan of the way he raced despite the antics at the start, held up by De Sousa who nursed him through the race, he made smooth headway and looked to be…


17:30 Kempton — Fast Start 7/2 1.5pt Win

One selection coming today from the Kempton’s All-weather meeting. We will have an unusually busy week coming up, York’s Ebor meeting will be sure to bring up plenty of top-class action.

Back to Kempton for now though, an interesting 4 runner contest and I think there is a joker in the pack. Fast Start for S Bin Suroor and Godolphin is the pick.

He opened up his season when well beaten behind Lauded, that horse has proven to be Group class following his recent run in the Group 3 Richmond Stakes and mark of 101.

You will have to scrub…


14:15 Market Rasen — El Presente 7/4 1.5pt Win

My first selection comes from the summer jumps meeting at Market Rasen, I will be taking El Presente to build on a facile win on seasonal return.

El Presente made a pleasing start to life over fences last season when not being beaten far at Huntingdon. That day he could only manage 4th behind Whatamore (138), Pym (150) and Deyrann De Carjac (145). I think it’s worth noting that both Pym and Deyrann De Carjac went into that race of the mark of 137 and improved as the season went on.

El Presente didn't put his best foot forward in…


13:35 Deauville – Victor Ludorum 6/4 2pt Win

A small field Group 2 over in Deaville, I will be capitalising on Victor Ludorum’s larger price as he looks to get back to winning ways.

I took the view following the Prix Du Jockey Club that Victor Ludorum was the best horse, he was unfavourably drawn and had to go the long way round to make his challenge. Given we have a smaller field here there should be no issue travelling a lot smoother.

As Mishriff was the winner of the big one last month, he has rightfully taken his spot at the top of the market. Despite having…

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