We start todays trio of selections with all three coming from Sedgefield. The 14:50 race looks an open looking hurdles contest where we have bottom weight Optical High heading the market at around 11/4. The Sue Smith trained runner has been pretty consistent this year but despite a decent second placed finish last time I fear it may bee a tad too high in the weights to win this.
In terms of the market the favourite is closely followed by Moscow Presents and Snapping Turtle. The eight year old trained by Philip Kirby comes into the race off a respectable placed effort and hails from an in form yard who’s picked up a handful of winners over the past fortnight. That being said however this runner isn’t certain to enjoy the 3m3f trip and may be its undoing. The top weight, unlike Moscow Presents, will enjoy todays conditions with a previous course and distance victory to its name. The horse has ability but just like the favourite I feel this handicap mark will be too much to overcome today.
My selection goes to a horse who has won over the course and over the distance before and hails from a yard that’s bang in form. The eleven year old Dusky Bob has a better record in chases but has still tasted success hurdling. The horse has won off a higher mark over hurdles and has placed off a mark of 113 (15lbs higher than today) Brian Ellison will have the eleven year old ready to go after a disappointing performance last time out and looks a value bet as the outsider of the six runners. Although for betting purposes there’s only two places it may still be worth having an each-way punt.
Dusky Bob (E/W)
As with our first selection the second of todays three best bets also hails from the yard of Brian Ellison. Clearly the trainer has his horses in fine fettle and his seven year old Jac The Legend can scoop another course victory here.
Four of the five runners have course victories so the task at hand shouldn’t be of too much difficulty. The most likely threat comes from both Askamore Darsi and Auldthunder who have been ultra consistent. I fear that Jac The Legend’s jumping and rise in the weights may be the bigger obstacle though but I’m sure its fluency over its fences will be something the Ellison camp have worked on. With a small field being a positive with the horse being able to sight his fences much easier and I can see Will Kennedy grabbing a win as the ultra consistent performer looks to claim victory in this ultra competitive race.
Jac The Legend (WIN)
The final selection of the day sees the ladies take centre stage in this class four, mares handicap hurdle. Although I threaten to sound like a broken record my third selection also hails from a yard who have their horses firing on all cylinders at the moment. David Pipe picked up a victory in one of the Channel 4 races yesterday. They send top weight, five year old, Bella here to try and make it three wins in a row. The horse hasn’t been raised in the weights for its last victory twenty days ago and will enjoy the softer conditions on offer today.
In truth it looks to be somewhat of a two horse race with the biggest rival seeming to be course and distance winner Libby Mae. Micky Hammond has picked up a few winners recently so his runner is bound to cause a threat. This lightly raced runner out of High Chapparel ticks plenty of boxes but I fear Bella may just be slightly classier and have enough in the locker to keep Libby Mae at bay.