There is a terrific 3m 1f handicap chase at Cheltenham on Saturday and Just A Sting may be slightly overpriced at 16/1 with BetVictor although this extended three miles might just stretch his stamina. First time out is the time to catch Harry Fry’s seven-year-old and he is the each way recommendation – 4 places at BetVictor.
Cheltenham’s two-day October meeting starts tomorrow but there are some excellent cards today and we begin at Carlisle where the Beginners Chase has attracted a small but high-quality field of five.
Global Citizen and Midnight Shadow were the highest rated of the quintet over timber but I have long felt Brewin’upastorm (2.25) could make up into a top-class chaser and Olly Murphy’s six-year-old – who has had his wind operated on over the summer – gets the vote in a race that would not have looked out of place at Cheltenham this weekend.
The selection was last seen finishing second in a Grade 1 at Aintree over 2m 4f and he will get further in time, but he gets the vote on this stiff track. Good Boy Bobby was kept in the shallow end over hurdles last term, but he is thrown in at the deep end for his chase debut. He has a terrific record fresh and has the scope to jump a fence.
This is a big day for the Olly Murphy yard who saddle both Brewin’upastorm and Overthetop (1.50) who is unbeaten having won his sole point in his native Ireland and then a Bumper at Warwick back in the spring. The selection cost connections £150,000 and is closely related to a number of winning hurdlers. He is another exciting prospect and this 2m 4f trip should suit.
At Ludlow Humble Hero (2.00) was a favourite of mine on the level for William Haggas although he does have his quirks. His trainer reported that the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham next month was his early season target in a recent interview with the Racing Post. If that is the case, he must go very close this afternoon despite carrying a penalty for his win at Newbury back in March.
Agent Westy (2.35) had not touched a twig when he came down at halfway at Plumpton on Monday, but I feel I must give him another chance although I appreciate that he comes with a risk. Evan Williams has a good record at the Shropshire track, and I hope his young chaser has learnt from what was a novicey mistake earlier in the week.
What’s Occurring (3.40) has an excellent record fresh and is taken to make a winning chase debut for Oliver Sherwood whose string have been running well, but not been striking gold of late. The selection has the scope for the larger obstacles and two miles on a right-handed track on decent ground clearly suits.
At Chelmsford this evening Futuristic (6.00) looked ready for a step up in trip when scoring at Newcastle last week over 6f. James Tate’s three-year-old carries a 6lbs penalty for that success but there should be more to come from a decent draw stepped up to 7f for the first time.
Farnham (7.00) has not seen the track since running with promise on debut at Newbury back in the spring when well supported in the market. Connections have taken their time with the filly but will be keen to get a win next to her name.