Former Talksport man Charlie McCann marks your card with six to follow on Saturday at Sandown Park and Ayr. View selections below.
Irish Champion Trainer Willie Mullins brings Yorkhill (2.25) over for this afternoon’s G1 Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown and likely to take all the beating. The selection is a point-to-point winner in his native Ireland and is now subsequently unbeaten in three starts under rules.
Tolworth Hurdle prices from BetVictor
O O Seven 10/3
Welsh Shadow 4/1
Cyrius Morviere 25/1
Bumper wins at Gowran Park and Punchestown was followed by an impressive debut over hurdles scoring impressively under Ruby Walsh over two and a half miles at Punchestown. Walsh travels over for the ride and, whilst the drop back in trip to two miles isn’t ideal, his extra stamina should aid his chances further and help him get the better of Dan Skelton’s recent Haydock scorer Welsh Shadow. Yorkhill is 10/1 with BetVictor for both the Albert Bartlett and Supreme Novices’ Hurdles at the Cheltenham Festival but his two and a miles is more likely to suit and he warrants supporting at 8/1 for Neptune Novices’ Hurdle success at the festival in March.
Mullins is double-handed for the Mares’ Listed Hurdle over two and a half miles with Ruby Walsh partnering previous course and distance winner Gitane Du Berlais and Bryan Cooper partnering stablemate Petite Parisienne. Both have obvious claims after a recent pair of runner-up efforts in higher company however, the same can be said about Nicky Henderson’s Polly Peachum (12.40) who should strip fitter for her seasonal reappearance at Kempton Park. The selection was an impressive winner in a similar contest at the track ‘s jumps finale meeting in April and, 5lb clear of the field on official ratings, should take some beating if running up to her mark.
Venetia Williams boasts a terrific record in handicap chases around Sandown and is represented by Cash and Go and Arthur’s Oak (1.50) for the 2m Handicap Chase, with the latter getting the nod under Aidan Coleman. The selection has won his last two starts over fences and scored by an impressive 17 lengths on his seasonal debut last month at Haydock. A 15lb rise at the weights should make life difficult but he remains unexposed over fences and is likely to handle the forecast heavy ground better than most.
A terrific field of 16 go to post for the Veterans’ Handicap Chase finale and Venetia treble-handed with Renard, Relax and Aachen. The latter remains of interest after recent victories at Wincanton and Cheltenham but is up 13lb for those efforts and undoubtedly has it all to prove from a career-high mark of 146.
Three miles on heavy ground isn’t everyone’s cup of tea but David Pipe’s Soll (3.00) has conditions to suit and can land a nice pot under Tom Scudamore. The 11-y-o loves soft ground and has come on leaps and bounds since joining Pond House last term. A 15lb rise for successes at Newbury and Exeter last season seems fair and after an excellent fourth last time out in the Becher at Aintree should remain competitive from an unrevised mark.
There’s an excellent supporting card at Ayr where Jonjo O’Neill’s Capard King (2.05) must go close under Richie McClernon. The selection scored over course and distance, albeit over hurdles, on Scottish National day in April and made a pleasing debut over fences when making a winning return at Southwell under Richard Johnson. The form of that success has already been franked and he appears well-treated from just a 4lb higher mark.
McClernon can double-up aboard Tap Night (2.40) in the feature handicap hurdle over two and a half miles. Lucinda Russell’s stable star took advantage of a plundering mark when scoring last month at Musselburgh and with a renewed zest for life can follow-up from a 6lb higher mark.