Teddy Tee has made the frame in three from four over fences but was held by the winner on each occasion and was well beaten on both previous visits to the course. His only career victory came in heavy ground and his stable are in good form but I can’t help but think he will find one too good once again.
Just Georgie won at Wetherby on penultimate run before finishing behind Hills Of Dubai over a shorter trip last time out. He has winning form in heavy ground and should be capable of reversing that form over this longer trip, however the recent stable and jockey from is a concern so I’m opting for ACDC who has made the frame in all three previous runs at the course, has a decent strike rate in heavy ground, has won over similar trips and was victorious when last ridden by today’s jockey.
Jumira Bridge won on seasonal re-appearance last season so wouldn’t be winning out of turn on his first run for a new stable. That said, he is yet to experience an all-weather surface so this could just be more of a fact-finding mission.
Tomily beat Amomentofmadness by almost a length at Lingfield last month but Amomentofmadness re-opposes on 5lbs better terms, won this race last year and is unbeaten at Kempton so is fancied to reverse that form and follow up on last year’s victory with another win today.
Early favourite Taxmeifyoucan has won two from three over hurdles including over course and distance in heavy ground when last seen in February. Partnered with an in-form jockey who has an excellent record when riding for the stable, he looks capable of further improvement and could prove tough to beat.
Keith Dalgleish also runs Mirsaale who is two wins from two over course and distance and returns to hurdles following a spin on the flat at Musselburgh last week. At a bigger price he could be capable of making the frame in handling the conditions.
Others to consider include Nietzsche who has been dropped another 3lbs from last run and Reverend Crust who has winning form in heavy ground and over today’s trip although has been upped 1lbs for a second placed finish last time out.
Raucous has his first run since leaving William Haggas and had started to disappoint towards the back end of last season. That said, he did win on first run of last season, on his only previous run on the all-weather, so catching him fresh could be the secret to the five-year-old and for this reason he is the selection here.
Ravens Lady and Mazzini both tend to run well at the course and have winning form over the trip and are respected accordingly, while Tropics is a Group level performer on his best form and although is unlikely to reach these heights again he has won three of his last five and is no forlorn hope for a place.
Yala Enki won this race last year and ran a decent race when sixth in the Ultima at Cheltenham last month. He won’t mind conditions but has 6lbs more to carry this year, has already raced seven times in some tough races this season and the stable haven’t had the best of seasons so is opposed today.
Wild West Wind won three of his first four over fences but has become frustrating since the turn of the year having fallen, unseated his rider and refused when beaten in his last three runs. He is proven in heavy ground and over similar trips so would have to be considered a danger if recapturing his form of last year.
Baywing won the Eider Chase at Newcastle in February but the form of that race so far hasn’t worked out well and a 9lbs rise will make things more difficult so I’m taking a chance on Chic Name who finished fifth at 100/1 in the Glenfarclas Chase at Cheltenham and is partnered with exciting young jockey James Bown who claims a handy 3lbs.
Chic Name (E/W)
Smart Call won four in a row at Kenilworth and Turffontein in 2016 before transferring to Sir Michael Stoute. She hasn’t won since but has been racing at the highest level so today sees a drop in class for seasonal re-appearance. On a couple of occasions she has looked to need her first run and also tries the all-weather for the first time so this is enough to make me look elsewhere.
Jeremy Noseda has an excellent record at Kempton and has enlisted the services of in-form jockey James Doyle for his runner La Figlia who for me looks to have a great chance here today. She finished just over a length behind Muffri’Ha in a Listed contest at Newmarket in September last year and both Muffri’Ha and second placed Permission have both won at Listed level since. A solid second over an inadequate trip here at Kempton on racecourse debut suggests she will do well here today and for that reason she is my NAP of the day.
La Figlia (WIN) – NAP
Takingrisks and Landecker both have excellent records at the course and both have winning form in heavy ground, while Letmego is a previous course and distance winner who has won three of his last four and all three have a chance of getting involved with a clear round of jumping.
Kris Spin was an impressive winner over this trip in heavy ground last time out, winning by fourteen lengths. A 7lbs rise takes him to a career-high mark but based on his performance last time out a follow-up wouldn’t be a big surprise.
Donna’s Diamond won a Grade 2 race in heavy ground at Haydock on penultimate run and although found it tough in the Stayers Hurdle at Cheltenham last month he drops back in to handicap company today and should make a bold bid under top-weight.
That said, I’m siding with Lastbutnotleast who is unbeaten in three over hurdles, has winning form in heavy ground and runs for a stable and jockey who have an excellent strike rate when teaming up.
written by Dean Kilbryde