• Fri 22 Sep, 2017
  • 02:04 BST
  • 22:04 EST (BST-4)
  • 04:04 CEST (BST+2)

Five to follow on Saturday

Alan Thomson, the former Racing Editor at the Daily Record, puts up five tips at Haydock Park on Saturday. View selections below.

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BRISTOL DE MAI (3.15) has shown a liking for Haydock and is fancied to plunder the Peter Marsh Chase.

Nigel Twiston-Davies’ gelding was a bit sketchy over some of his fences at Newcastle when runner-up in a competitive renewal of the Rehearsal Chase. The positively-ridden grey had most of his rivals at full stretch down the straight and was only mastered by Otago Trail at the last obstacle, with Definitly Red staying on in third.

Bristol De Mai fairly hosed up at Haydock in the novice chase at this fixture 12 months ago, with favourite Otago Trail failing to spark and finishing tailed off. There’s a slight question-mark over Bristol De Mai’s ability to stay a strongly-run three miles but he wasn’t stopping at Newcastle. He is taken to reverse Newcastle placings with Otago Trail, subsequently pulled up on a trip to Leopardstown.

The dark horse, and something of a talking horse, is Colin Tizzard’s French recruit Alary.

Owned by Alan and Ann Potts, Alary must concede weight all round but Tizzard has marked him up as a possible live outsider for the Cheltenham Gold Cup (20-1 ante-post with most firms).

Sausilito Sunrise has been a grand servant to Philip Hobbs and the handicapper has shown a little leniency following a couple of modest efforts at Cheltenham. He looks the each-way value at around 10-1 but I’ll be disappointed if Bristol De Mai isn’t in the firing line over the last couple of fences.

The opening two-mile handicap hurdle lacks strength in depth and HASTRUBAL (12.55) could well step up on his handicap debut at Ascot before Christmas when fifth to Kalondra.

That run came over 2m 5f and Henry Daly’s gelding was bang in contention two out but weakened running down to the last flight. This shorter trip should help and owner Trevor Hemmings likes nothing better than having winners at his local track.

POLITOLOGUE (1.30) will trade at more restrictive odds in the Star Sports Novices’ Chase, with Paul Nicholls’ gelding seeking a hat-trick following wins at Haydock and Ascot.

The six-year-old’s jumping has been blemish-free and he had his Ascot race in the bag a long way out as he motored clear of useful Rock The Kasbah.

The Potts/Tizzard axis is represented by Solatentif, who showed plenty of promise on his chasing debut at Plumpton splitting classy Baron Alco and Starchitect (winner at Ayr on Tuesday). He had good form over hurdles in Ireland for Henry de Bromhead and this longer trip should suit.

ELGIN (2.05) had the edge over Moyaayed at Kempton and is taken to come out on top again in the Sky Bet Novices’ Hurdle.

Elgin,a previous Haydock bumper winner, travelled strongly throughout and never looked likely to be caught, although the runner-up cut his advantage to under two lengths at the line. Dan and Harry Skelton landed this prize last year with Its’afreebee, and Moyaayed could well be fighting out the finish again with Elgin.

UBALTIQUE (3.50) bids to repeat last year’s victory in the two-mile handicap chase, albeit off a 10lb higher mark.

Donald McCain’s gelding goes particularly well in the mud and came readily clear from the last fence to score by six lengths that day. He comes here in good heart, having chased home Dream Bolt at Chepstow 13 days ago.

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