PADDOCKS PATENT (TUESDAY)

14:20 Exeter Garde La Victoire won his first three over fences before falling at Cheltenham and unseating his rider at Aintree, however returned following the summer break with a commanding victory in the Welsh Champion Hurdle at Ffos Las in October. He won on good ground earlier in his career, won on his only previous trip to Exeter and races for a yard with a winning strike rate of almost 30% here so all things considered he looks to have a great chance of getting back to winning ways over fences. Harry Fry has sent eight runners over fences here at Exeter over the last three years and seven of these have made the frame, a fantastic strike rate of 87.5%. Given this, its slightly surprising that his runner Presenting Arms has only made the frame once from three attempts but visits the course for the first time since 2014 and has been extremely consistent over fences so rates as the main danger to the selection. Dodging Bullets has won at the very highest level, most notably the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham in 2015. He then missed almost twelve months due to injury and hasn’t been back to his best in three runs since but has won twice on return from a break earlier in his career and would be dangerous to dismiss if returning to something like his best form. Garde La Victoire (WIN)

14:30 Wolverhampton A Sure Welcome won on first attempt on the all-weather, over seven furlongs at Kempton last month, and looks likely to give a good account of himself again despite a 4lbs rise. However preference is for Galahad who gave his best career performance so far over today’s trip at Leicester in July and ran with credit in a much higher grade over six furlongs last time out. Richard Fahey has had a few winners on the all-weather in recent weeks and his two year old should benefit from the 3lbs drop and the return to seven furongs. Most of the remainder would need to show improvement to get involved however Sheila’s Return has placed three times from eight career runs and was just a neck behind the winner on first attempt over today’s trip so rates as the best of the rest off just a 2lbs higher mark. Galahad (WIN)

14:50 Exeter Early favourite Emerging Force beat Whataknight over hurdles at Doncaster in February and make a very impressive start to chasing when winning by fourteen lengths over a shorter trip at Hereford last month. He has proven form on good ground and has won over today’s trip previously so should be able to cope with the extra distance he encounters here. Rival Whataknight ran at Hereford just yesterday so it remains to be seen if he will take up his place here, however the race rather fell apart and he ran out an easy winner without having to get serious so would have to be considered a danger on similar ground over a similar trip, especially when considering Harry Fry’s record at the course. Fergal O’Brien has been in great from in recent weeks and sends Barney Dwan here on chasing debut. A Group 3 winner over hurdles, in a race that has produced five subsequent winners, he has the quality to get involved if taking to the larger obstacles. Emerging Force (WIN)

1 view