MUSSELBURGH’S re-arranged fixture has raced to the rescue, ensuring some excellent jumping action after the disappointing freeze-out of the Betfair Super Saturday card at Newbury. ARCTIC COURT (3.25) is very consistent and Jim Goldie’s eight-year-old will appreciate the slight drop in class in the John Smith’s Stayers’ Hurdle over an extended three miles. The locally-owned gelding, a runaway winner at Ayr’s Scottish National meeting in April, has put up a bold show at Cheltenham and Newbury on his last two starts and races off the same mark.
INGLEBY SPIRIT (2.20) is going for a course and distance hat-trick on his handicap debut in the John Smith’s Scottish County Hurdle and was especially impressive last month when romping home 16 lengths clear of the odds-on favourite, Absinthe, under regular pilot Brian Hughes. Richard Fahey’s gelding was rated in the 90s on the level and this sharp, flat track, with the emphasis on speed, clearly suits.
Lucinda Russell, fresh from a treble at Ayr on Monday, can lift the Future Champion Novices’ Chase with BOLD SIR BRIAN (4.00). The gelding had too much toe for Lie Forrit at Kelso in late December and is the apple of his trainer’s eye.
At Lingfield, EMMA’S GIFT (3.55) ran out a clear-cut winner after hitting the front a furlong out at snowy Wolverhampton last Saturday and she can go in again. Archie Rice, a very disappointing favourite that day, reopposes on much better terms and could well bounce back.
RESPLENDENT ALPHA (6.20) was unlucky not to be awarded the race in the stewards’ room at Wolverhampton on Thursday when squeezed out at the furlong pole and compensation awaits on his quick return to the Midlands track.
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