TEMPLEGATE has racked up some big winners the past few days and takes on the bookies in the ITV action today.
Read on to see his ITV racing tips.
Don't forget, all the action from Kelso, Doncaster and Newbury will be shown live on ITV from 12.55pm until 4pm.
MY DROGO was impressive when winning a Grade 2 at Ascot last time on just his second run over hurdles. The third from that race has come out and won the Betfair Hurdle so the form looks rock solid. He travelled like a quality performer over the two miles and the result was never in doubt. His debut win came on good ground so these better conditions hold no fears.
Lucky One has more experience and put 20 lengths between himself and the field when scorching home at Wincanton. He faces much stiffer opposition here so needs to improve but could well do so.
Bareback Jack has done nothing wrong in winning all three of his runs over timber. Two of those came at Musselburgh including in good style three Saturdays ago. Donald McCain raises his sights quite sharply here. Any News could be a bigger threat after his solid second at Cheltenham. He’s had a little break since that effort a place ahead of Lucky One. He may appreciate the quicker going today and is one to keep an eye on.
Castle Rushen is another who has been hoovering up prizes at a lower level. He won his first two starts of the season before going down in a head-bobber at Carlisle.
A bit further would be ideal so he may be tapped for toe but has to go on the shortlist. Do Your Job was outclassed in the Tolworth Hurdle last time and needs his wind op to help him find the form of his Haydock Listed second.
MEGA YEATS came back from a long break to run well in a jumper’s bumper at Kempton last time. Her last hurdles outing saw her run well at Cheltenham and she looks on a handy mark. Flash Collonges is the form horse after an easy novice win at Wincanton last month. The handicapper hasn’t gone mad and there’s more to come.
Torn And Frayed was impressive when scooting in at Hereford six days ago. Canny Nigel Twiston-Davies sends him north to run under a 7lb penalty and he has every chance. Sebastopol has had a wind op since a modest effort at Musselburgh. He was much better at that track when scoring three outings ago and is only 2lb higher in the weights today with the champion jockey on board.
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TWO FOR GOLD got his act together in fine style when getting the better of Aso at Warwick last time. He went from the front there and can confirm those placings at a track where he’s run well before. Venetia Williams’ hope is better off at the weights today but hasn’t won for more than two years now.
Cloth Cap was brilliant when winning the Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury by an impressive ten lengths. It’s all systems go for the Grand National now and this shorter trip doesn’t really play to his strengths. Definitly Red won this last year and has to come into the reckoning despite his heavy fall at Newcastle last time. He would prefer more testing ground to turn this into more of a slog. Lake View Lad landed a Grade 2 at Aintree in December but couldn’t back that up at Sandown. He may find this ground too quick.
FAIVOIR continued his improvement with Grade 2 victory at Haydock last time where the slow pace didn’t play to his strengths. He goes into a big-field handicap for the first time here and can take another step forward from what looks a fair mark.
The Shunter landed the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham in November and followed up with a cracking third in a hot chase at Leopardstown. He’s a fair 7lb higher now and comes over from Ireland with a big say.
Paul Nicholls has a couple of chances with Christopher Wood coming here on the back of an easy win at Musselburgh. This is tougher but he can progress. Stablemate Solo was a Grade 2 winner last year but has struggled this season. He’s down the weights but needs to find his best.
Hunters Call was a solid third in the Lanzarote Hurdle at Kempton when seeing out the longer trip well. Trainer Olly Murphy is going well but he’s 11lb higher than his last win and may be tapped for toe. Tommy’s Oscar is consistent and followed a hat-trick of wins with a good second at Musselburgh.
RAYNA’S WORLD comes down in class and goes up in trip and that combination can do the trick. She was only just getting started at the end of 2m4f in a Grade 2 at Sandown last time. She ran on well to finish just four lengths off the winner. This longer distance and easier opposition gives her every chance.
Go Millie Go has been impressive at a lower level and had plenty in hand at Exeter last time. She’s had a little break since then and could raise her game in this stronger company. Wynn House is another moving down the grades and she wasn’t disgraced at Cheltenham in December. That was her first crack a three miles and she saw it out well. This better ground is a plus as she scored nicely at Ludlow on good before that.
Airgead Suas showed lots of staying power to win at Catterick in November before flopping there last time when not getting the best of runs. She’s better than that, while it’s early days for Alpha Carinae who is better than her laboured fourth at Warwick last time out and has had a little break.
RIKOBOY didn’t always roll his sleeves up over hurdles but he looks much more of a battler when jumping a fence. He kicked off his chase career with a ten-length win at Market Rasen and went down in a tight finish at Musselburgh last time. He has plenty of pace for this trip and looks open to lots of improvement.
It’s early days at this level for Zoffee too and he was far from disgraced on his handicap debut at Newbury. He went for home a long way out and that led to him running out of petrol in the closing stages. He’s had a break since then and Philip Hobbs is banging in the winners this week.
Getaway Trump has always given the impression that there’s more to come but he’s yet to really deliver. He faded badly at Musselburgh last time and needs this drop in trip to sharpen him up on handicap chase debut. He won off higher marks than this over hurdles so can’t be dismissed. Return Ticket drops back to his best trip and is fit from a bumper run. He’s 6lb higher than his last win but will like the better ground.
CANELO is the only runner in the field who could have more to come in this staying division. He landed the tough Rowland Meyrick Chase in fine style at Wetherby on Boxing Day when seeing out the three miles really well. He then put in a respectable effort around here when finishing fourth in the Sky Bet Chase, which was deeper than this contest. He’s had a little nudge down the weights, which can’t hurt and Alan King can help himself to another weekend winner.
If Beware The Bear comes back to his best form he’d be a major contender. Nicky Henderson’s hope has dropped to just 2lb higher than the mark for his 2019 Ultima win at the Cheltenham Festival. He was a solid fifth on comeback in the Ladbroke Trophy before flopping at Ascot. James Bowen will have to push and shove but he has enough quality to figure.
Chidswell won this two seasons ago and looks to have been laid out by canny Nicky Richards. He had a spin over hurdles last time which should leave him spot-on for fitness. He needs to jump better but his liking for Donny can take him close.
Just A Sting hasn’t completed a chase since his Kempton win in December 2019. He’s just 1lb higher than that win now and is another who had a pipe-opener on the all-weather. Chef D’Oeuvre has been hurdling but went close at Wetherby on his latest chase start. His best form has come on decent ground and he should be fitter for his Haydock outing.
PRESENT MAN is best fresh as he showed when winning after a long break at Chepstow in October. He has had 108 days off since a poor effort at Warwick but could easily bounce back. He’s a proven stayer racing off a fair mark.
West Approach is coming down the weights and showed positive signs when fourth at Doncaster last time. He can hit the frame. Sir Ivan went well when third in the final of this series at Sandown. This trip stretches him but he’ll give it a good go. Singlefarmpayment is likely to run well again but his last win was back in 2016. Valadom stays well and won his last chase start in November.
UMBRIGADO is improving with every run so can cope with this hike in class. David Pipe’s chaser was impressive when scoring at Wetherby last time and shapes as though stepping up to this distance will bring out the best in him. He looks on a fair weight and can run well.
Pistol Whipped is another runner on the upgrade. He came back from ten months off to go close at Kempton in January. He tanked into contention but his lack of a recent run proved costly in the dying yards. He can build on that encouraging effort. Senior Citizen ran well over the Grand National fences at Aintree last time and looked set to win until his stamina gave out in the bottomless ground. This speed track and quicker going will be right up his street.
Killer Clown is another young chaser going places and he landed an impressive victory at Kempton on Boxing Day. The handicapper was watching but he has to be considered despite a 13lb weight rise. Grand Sancy started this season with a Listed win before flopping at Wincanton. He’s had a break since then which could have put him right.
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