Fiddlerontheroof is 9/4 with BetVictor for the Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown on Saturday as the Colin Tizzard stable try to win the Grade 1 2m novice hurdle for the third time in four years. Emma Lavelle’s Hang In There heads the market at 2/1 but looks a vulnerable favourite with Nicky Henderson’s Son Of Camas 5/2 in what looks a competitive, if not vintage, renewal of this prestigious race.
They go at Musselburgh this afternoon and I hope to see Petite Ganache (2.25) reverse C&D form with Chanceanotherfive who is 15lbs worse off with the selection for the 7L he scored by back in November. The latter has subsequently followed up from a 7lbs lower mark, but the Nicky Richards’ yard did us a favour with the promising Marown at Ayr on Thursday and I hope his inmate can go one better than last time. Do note he would not want the ground to deteriorate from the forecast good to soft.
I’m not convinced Irish Roe has been crying out for a trip of 2m 6f on her chase debut, but she is a fascinating contender making the transition to the larger obstacles at the age of nine. I’m To Blame (3.00) on the other hand looked ready for a step back up in trip when runner up at Newcastle last time, having finished runner up over two-and-a-half miles at Carlisle previously to a subsequent winner.
Mahlervous is a horse with ability who needs good ground to be seen at his best and he is worth watching for a market move on his chase debut especially if the market speaks in his favour. The form of the Warren Greatrex yard is a concern, however, although he did have a couple of fancied runners at Ayr yesterday. There is no question that Emitom did not give his running at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day and I shall be watching the yard until I see evidence that they are back to their best.
Blueskyandsunshine (3.35) there might not be in Scotland, but I hope it is a good day for Keith Dalgleish who saddles I’m To Blame as well as the likely favourite in the Bumper. The selection was well supported at Catterick on his racecourse debut but failed to see his race out – he looks worth another try.
There is a hot novice chase at Hereford where Locker Room Talk is unlikely to get the soft lead he got in a handicap at Taunton last time. The vote goes to the mare Dame du Soir (2.45) who ran a very good race on her chase debut at Exeter where she gave the decent mare Midnight Tune a battle although the latter was giving her 6lbs. The French import Red Risk has his first start in Britain and has joined Paul Nicholls having cost connections E72,000 back in October. A check of the market is advised.
Getaway Totherock would be giving Eleanor Bob (3.55) 2lbs if this were a handicap but she receives 6lbs from the Venetia Williams’ runner this afternoon. That said I still believe the latter is the one to be with as I was impressed with her recent win at Exeter from a Harry Fry odds on shot. The selection has won her last two on heavy ground and she may be better served if the race became a thorough test despite being a couple of years younger than the Alastair Ralph-trained mare who caused a 20/1 shock when scoring at Ludlow last time.
At Wolverhampton it is hard to get away from Clapyourhands (2.05) who scored by 9L here on Boxing Day and has been raised by 13lbs for his recent course win and is thus 8lbs “well-in” under a 5lbs penalty.