Betting was suspended on Saturday’s Tingle Creek yesterday at BetVictor with concern raised on Social Media that antepost favourite Douvan (5/6 favourite at the time) would miss the race with speculation that Un De Sceaux would be the likely Willie Mullins representative at Sandown. It will be interesting to see which inmate, if any, is declared for the Grade 1 contest at the 48-hour stage on Thursday morning.
Rain is forecast overnight/early morning for all tomorrow’s turf cards in Britain and conditions are likely to ease at all tracks. We begin our preview at Wincanton where there is a fascinating Mares’ Novices Hurdle featuring the hurdling debutante Petticoat Tails (1.00) last seen finishing third in the Grade 2 Aintree Mares’ Bumper back in the spring.
The selection has the scope to jump a hurdle and today’s 2m 5f trip should be ideal for this dual Bumper winner including on soft ground on debut. Midnight Tune finished runner up in a handicap over C&D last month but a bigger danger is likely to be Just A Thought who was backed as if defeat was out of the question at Warwick last time.
The winner (Station Castle) did us a favour at Southwell earlier in the week and the drop back in trip should suit the Rebecca Curtis-trained mare who will give the selection a lot to think about especially if she can improve her jumping although she was 6l behind the selection in a listed Bumper contest at Sandown back in March. The Curtis yard again hinted at a return to form yesterday when Relentless Dreamer bumped into the vey well handicapped Audacious Plan at Ludlow yesterday.
The Silver Buck Handicap Chase is a valuable heat and Jennys Surprise (1.35) – who won the Grand Military Gold Cup earlier in the year – can score for Fergal O’Brien and Paddy Brennan. The selection has been raised 6lbs for scoring at Uttoxeter on his reappearance but the mare remains fairly-treated on her best form and this three-and-a-quarter-mile trip on soft ground holds no terrors.
There are a number of dangers but I feel Bugsie Malone is the pick having led at this distance when fourth in the Southern National over an additional quarter mile last time. The handicapper has seen fit to drop Chris Gordon’s charge 3lbs for that effort – that could look very lenient later this afternoon.
Nightfly landed a 20/1 shock at Southwell on Tuesday and only some novicey jumps let down Ballydine at Haydock yesterday which suggests Charlie Longsdon’s yard are in good form after a quiet spell. The mare Leith Hill Legacy (2.40) is entitled to come on for her Chepstow reappearance last month and is fairly-handicapped on the best of last season’s form. The booking of Adrian Coleman is certainly a positive.
The lightly-raced Chateau Robin (3.15) is taken to land the Amateur Riders’ event for Kim Bailey having suggested there was more to come when second at Ayr from a 2lbs lower mark on his chase debut last month.
At Market Rasen, Barney Dwan (1.55) has been frustrating in the last couple of seasons but is a talented horse and he can land the three-runner Novices’ Chase, which is small in numbers but is actually a fascinating and informative contest.