13:18 Warwick

Just the four head to post for this two mile handicap chase.

Sky Pirate carries top weight here and has to concede at least a stone and a half to his rivals. Last years Grand Annual winner at the festival has acquitted himself well in three starts this season. However the weight concession is large and he’s arguably better on good ground.

Not Available has been in cracking form lately. He likes to race prominently and this small field should suit his run style. This does represent a step up in class however.

Brave Seasca looks progressive. He was a comfortable winner at Ascot last time out. He jumped well that day despite going slightly left. That trait shouldn’t be an issue this time hopefully on this left handed track.

Fast Buck finished behind Brave Seasca at Ascot last time, but wasn’t beaten far and it’s not beyond the realms of possibility he could turn that form around at a decent price. There’s no doubt this horse has an engine, but equally he’s not the most fluent of jumpers. The fences come thick and fast here so he’ll certainly need to up his game. At the prices he looks a value option.


written by Matt Polley

13:32 Kempton Champagne Court exploited his lower hurdles mark last time out at Exeter under Lorcan Williams and although he does look well weighted on his best chasing form from 2019, his price will likely be too short to take a chance that this recent hurdles form will spark him over fences. Foxboro has been in good form recently and although he hasn’t yet broken his duck over fences, he went very close on his last run and a win is surely going to come at some point - it just might not be in a race that is this competitive. Kap Auteuil is another who has been running well, winning five of his nine chase starts to date. The step up in trip appeared to suit last time out as he stayed on really well in that contest and was well on top in the end so a 4lb rise appears fair and he would be my selection in a very wide open contest.


written by Tom Bates

13:50 Warwick

An intriguing Grade 2 Novice Chase which will see Threeunderthrufive try to win his fourth chase on the bounce. He certainly has done nothing wrong but I feel this could be his toughest assignment to date and may not be deserving of such a likely short SP. Doyen Breed will be representing the Sandy Thomson yard and his second last time out behind last year’s most improved horse Bushypark doesn’t leave him too much to find at the weights compared to official marks with the favourite.

Mossy Fen could well be the value though and is an interesting contender for very shrewd connections. His hurdles form would put him firmly in the picture in today's contest, mainly his fifth in the 2020 Ballymore. Also, on this card two years ago he took the Grade 2 novice hurdle which follows this race, beating Shan Blue off levels weight in what was strong staying display. If the stable switch and the return to Warwick have a positive effect, he could be involved at the finish.


written by Michael Taylor

14:05 Kempton

This years renewal of the Silviniaco Conti Chase consists of a small but evenly matched quartet, with very little between them on paper and in the betting. Previous Grade One scorer Defi De Seuil hasn’t been at his best but still commands respect, if he can find his way back to the top. That being said, he does have to bounce back from a series of disappointing races.

Mister Fisher has won at Kempton before and is a dual Grade Two victor. He probably found the King George too hot to handle, pulling up before the third last fence. He warrants consideration, especially back down to his optimum trip. Moreover, Nicky Henderson’s highflying barn have taken this race four times in the last six years. The only question that can be posed, is whether he can take the step to being back to winning ways.

Eldorado Allen arguably arrives here in the best form of them all. He won the Haldon Gold Cup on his seasonal debut and was a creditable third in the Peterborough Chase. However, he hasn’t got brilliant form over this distance and Kempton is an unknown, though not a major one. He’s the biggest danger.

Rouge Vif has only ran once since joining Paul Nicholls’ mighty Ditcheat barn, finishing well beaten in the Shloer Chase. That was also his first run since having wing surgery, so he will come on for that. He’s up in trip today and that could work well on his favour. He’s ran well at Kempton before and is in receipt of six pounds from his aforementioned two rivals. If anyone can get him to click, the Ditcheat Maestro can.


written by Kieran McHugh

14:25 Warwick

The Ballymore Novice Hurdle at Warwick Saturday usually targets horses that fancy a crack or see what level they are at for the Ballymore Novice Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival and this race looks quite open. A number of these can improve and have a good future ahead of them

Favourite Surrey Quest has won nicely the last two times out and faces a step up to what he has faced so far in his career but has won his last two races with relative ease. You would want to see what he has under him as such where he won't necessarily have it all his own way.

Party Business was very impressive at Ascot beating quite a few fancied horses that day and winning at 22/1. Has run in a Grade 1 in the Challow Hurdle at Newbury, Falling 2 out when looking certainly to be in top 3 so you could argue he has shown the best bit of form in this race. In that race he has gone against some of the better novice hurdlers this season. Should be bang in contention against this opposition.

Viva Lavilla was up against Lossiemouth when finishing 2nd in the race at Sandown was no match for Lossiemouth that day but still ran a credible 2nd which looks a good piece of form.

Two that I do like in this race one of them is Stag Horn. Archie Watson normally associated with the flat season. His Flat form is fairly decent finishing 4th at Royal Ascot in a 2-mile 5 Furlong race (Queen Alexandra Race) and that was against some fairly established Horses such as Stratum of Willie Mullins, The Grand Visir.

Stag Horn won't mind the trip or the soft ground. I just think that form sticks out. Likes to dictate at the front and providing his jumping holds up could make all from the front if they adopt those tactics.

The other horse I like as an outsider is Howdyalikemenow of Evan Williams. Can't knock a horse for winning 3 out of his 4 starts this season. Obviously, this is a massive step up in class for Howdyalikemenow. His best result was probably last time out at Ffos Las where he won on heavy ground so if the ground was to get testing in what is a testing track already. He certainly has an each way shout at around 16/1 (At time of writing). His price does look pretty big considering his form looks reasonable. You'll only know how good a horse is until you test them against classier horses.

There are a few bookies paying three places in this 7-runner race so try and take advantage of the extra place on offer.



written by Luke Tucker

14:40 Kempton

An increase in prize money, to a staggering £100k, has enticed a full field of twenty for this season’s Lanzarote Hurdle, and after sustained support throughout the week Marie’s Rock looks likely to go off towards the head of the market. She showed a marked improvement for the step up in trip when winning well over course and distance on Boxing Day, an authoritative seven length victory over An Tailliur (who had won three of his previous four) despite flattening the last hurdle, and if arriving here in the same form should give a good account despite a 9lbs rise.

Gelino Bello is also likely to have plenty of supporters following his two placed efforts behind the exciting Blazing Khal in Grade 2 races at Cheltenham earlier in the season, especially when considering he’s been dropped 2lbs and also drops down in grade for todays’ race.

Both of the above command plenty of respect, however considering the competitive nature of the race I am opting for one at a slightly bigger price and that is Green Book who was impressive when winning over this trip at Ludlow when last seen, beating two subsequent winners in the process. His rise in the weights is negated by the 10lbs claim of jockey Ned Fox who has already ridden the five-year-old to victory when they last teamed up so i am hoping they can both continue on their upwards trajectory with a solid performance here.


written by Dean Kilbryde

15:00 Warwick

Notachance showed a good attitude when proving too strong for the re-opposing Achille in this race last season and would have fair claims if producing a similar display this time around. Since then however, Alan King's eight-year-old has been pulled up on three occasions and was only a moderate sixth at Haydock last time. Allowed to run off the same mark today, he could prove dangerous though his yard are out of form and a leap of faith would be required.

Achille often flatters to deceive and has become rather frustrating since last winning at Ffos Las, back in 2019. Hampered at the start when a fair fourth in the Welsh National the last day and a fair fifth in the Becher the time before, his form claims are strong though he probably needs everything to fall just right and is taken on for win purposes.

Corach Rambler is as progressive as any and arrives here chasing a hat-trick, after impressing at both Aintree and Cheltenham. Seemingly well suited by tests of stamina, there are quirks about Lucinda Russell's charge (Has an awkward head carriage and idled badly in front last time) though they haven't proven costly as of yet and he looks the one to beat despite having top weight.

Gericault Rogue catches the eye for his connections and has taken well to fences so far, finishing in the places on all three occasions since switching from Hurdles. Stepped up in trip again today, he looks almost certain to relish the test and is respected despite needing to find more.

No Rematch and Jerrysback are others to consider but a chance will be taken on Corach Rambler shrugging off top weight and proving good enough on his hat-trick bid.


written by Chris Connolly

15:15 Kempton

The classy Caribean Boy tops the market and weights for this competitive handicap chase. In truth, Nicky Henderson’s charge has been disappointing since demolishing a field including Fiddlerontheroff on seasonal debut last season. He finished midfield in the Paddy Power Gold Cup at Cheltenham, when not beaten far and fell at the first last month which leaves him with work to do and others look like safer conveniences.

The ultra-consistent Smarty Wild is now just a pound above his last winning mark and even though he finished a close up third on his first attempt at this distance, the petrol light seemed to be on towards the end. Strictlyadancer looked high progressive when landing a hat trick of victories, two starts back but was poor at Sandown and might be a shade high in the handicap now. One of the elder statesmen Double Shuffle won this last season which gives him a chance but doesn’t come into the race in great form.

So I’ll side with the youngest horse in the field, Kitty’s Light for Christian Williams and the choice of Jack Tudor. He finished runner up in the Grade 2 Charlie Hall earlier in the season and after two average runs, he’s able to race off a six-pound lower mark. He’s won over further in the past which is a help, considering other suspect stayers in the field and if the ground dries any further, I think he’ll win.


written by Peter Keogh

15:35 Warwick

Unfortunately we only have the seven runners set to go to post which makes looking for an each way alternative much tricker however, despite the fact we just have the two places on offer, Third Wind (at current odds of around 11/2) makes very attractive each way value. Hughie Morrison’s eight year old is a former Grade 2 victor who will relish this softer ground. For me his return to handicap company is a positive move by connections however I feel he’s got targets much higher than handicapping in mind. Perhaps a tilt at the Stayers Hurdle at Cheltenham in March could be on the agenda and as such a win here and as such a hike in handicap mark wouldn’t be a problem.

Seven year old Sporting John holds a fantastic strike rate over hurdles having won 4 of his 6 starts over the smaller obstacles and it’d be foolish to rule him out here. Unfortunately the handicapper may have given him a bit too much to do when it comes to the weight he has to carry.

Of the remainder the current joint favourite Riggs hails from the in-form top yard of Dan Skelton. His 2nd in a Grade 3 contest at Haydock last time out looks very solid form and this relatively lightly tried runner may have a bright future ahead.


written by Rory Paddock