• Sat 20 Apr, 2024
  • 10:14 BST
  • 06:14 EST (BST-4)
  • 12:14 CEST (BST+2)

Five to follow on Saturday

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

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POLITOLOGUE (3.00) rates a standout each-way bet in a tantalising Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown.

Defi Du Seuil is a short-priced favourite to land the prestigious Betfair-sponsored two-miler and his devastating finishing kick could well prove decisive up the hill. However, he had just over a length in hand of Politologue in the Schloer Chase at Cheltenham last month and the Paul Nicholls-trained grey is 3lb better off.

The Harry Cobden-ridden Politologue defeated Fox Norton two years ago and Nicholls has plundered this race ten times with the likes of Kauto Star, Twist Magic and Master Minded. Politologue is trading around 9-2 and it will be difficult to kick him out of the first three if all eight runners go to post.

Un De Sceaux has been a magnificent servant to Willie Mullins and comes out on top on official figures. The 2016 winner chased home Altior last year, with Sceau Royal a disappointing last of four. Despite approaching the age of 12, front-running Un De Sceaux will make them all go, especially if the track comes up very soft. Northern ace Waiting Patiently returns to action with something to prove but isn’t entirely discounted.

Another treat is in store in the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase with SUMMERVILLE BOY (1.50) getting the nod over Torpillo, Nube Negra and Grand Sancy. Summerville Boy beat Kalashnikov in the 2018 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham and appeared to have benefited from a wind operation by scoring in convincing fashion from useful First Flow and Western Ryder on chasing debut at Uttoxeter.

He will need to be at the top of his game to repel ex-French recruit Torpillo, an all-the-way winner at Warwick. Third horse Lisp hacked up at Plumpton on Monday to boost that form line. Nube Negra has been most impressive in scoring at Fakenham and Warwick, while Grand Sancy was good enough to land the Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton last season.

At Aintree, KIMBERLITE CANDY (1.30) has several things in his favour at decent odds in the Randox Health Becher Handicap Chase. The seven-year-old goes well fresh, handles deep ground and stays well, and trainer Tom Lacey has chosen this 3m 2f target ahead of another engagement in the London National at Sandown.

The JP McManus-owned Kimberlite Candy found four miles over-stretching his stamina reserves when sent off favourite (fifth) for the Eider Chase at Newcastle in February, but his earlier staying-on Sandown third over three miles reads well enough to give him definite ew prospects. He has crept in near the bottom of the weights and wears cheek-pieces for the first time.

The McManus colours are out in abundance and GAVROCHEKA (2.05) must go close in the Virgin Bet Fillies’ Juvenile Hurdle. She was sent off 15-8 favourite on debut at Ludlow but had to give second-best to Alan King’s Group Stage. King relies on Midnight’s Gift, a short head winner from Break The Rules at Fakenham, with the pair re-opposing on the same terms.

Sponsors Virgin Bet must be thrilled to have attracted 2018 Cheltenham Gold Cup protagonists NATIVE RIVER (2.40) and Might Bite in the 3m 1f chase. They are both course and distance winners but Native River may be better equipped to handle very soft conditions. Interestingly, Native River is equipped with blinkers, while Might Bite is wearing cheek-pieces, both for the first time. Throw in popular Black Corton and this isn’t one to miss.

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