We start our day’s previews with a class three handicap chase. The current favourite Catching On won by seven lengths last time out but that was in a slightly lower grade than this and with the handicapper raising him eleven pounds he may just find this beyond him today.
Coolking was second in this race last year on heavy ground so if the going stays as it is he could have a better chance this time around especially as the handicapper has dropped him down to what looks a winning mark.
Viking Blood is another who’s been given a chance by the handicapper after finishing second in the Sussex National back in January, he has a very big engine under him and seems to keep going no matter the conditions and that’s the reason he is my selection for this today.
Viking Blood (E/W if 4/1+)
We head over to the fibresand for our second preview of the day. Sir Geoffrey won this race last year and even though he is five pounds lower from that win he hasn’t shown anything of that form since so it looks unlikely he will repeat that performance again today.
Powerful Wind has been knocking on the door recently but hasn’t won here since 2013 yet he has won off a higher mark than this today but may once again find one too good.
The horse that catches my eye is the lightly raced four year old Eva Clare; she’s not been seen since October but had shown a lot of promise on this surface last year and looks the type who can handle coming back fresh and what looks a good price has very good E/W claims.
Samhain is another who’s come off a long layoff and is another to note after winning over course and distance when last seen.
Eva Clare (E/W)
We skip quickly over to Newcastle for our final preview of the day. Ginger Jack has taken to hurdling very well after a modest sprinting career and will probably go off favourite for this today; he finished eight lengths behind the winner when finishing second last time out and has still been given a small penalty but the drop in grade may help his cause today and could be the one to beat.
Snowed In normally likes to try and make all in his races and was doing just that last time out but it seemed the penalty he got for his victory before that took its toll but he is usually up there at this level and is not one to dismiss.
Captain Sharpe to me is the most interesting one here; he’s now with his third trainer and has been tried at almost every distance on the flat and over the obstacles and with all that data it looks like two miles is his distance; he won over course and distance four months ago and is only five pounds higher from that win and could be the one to cause an upset here.
Captain Sharpe (E/W)