Great to see Goshen bounce back to his best form at Wincanton in the Kingwell Hurdle on Saturday when he travelled and jumped with the same zest that highlighted his juvenile successes. He is 9/2 for the Champion Hurdle with Boylesports but only 4s with sponsors Unibet although the latter have largely given up on antepost/early prices although they tend to be a tad more aggressive on raceday having avoided any early money.
At Carlisle this afternoon, Jonjo O’Neill fits Orrisdale (2.40) with first-time blinkers and his seven-year-old can get off the mark over fences although he has been raised 4lbs rise for finishing second last time. The winner franked the form when nabbed close home from a 10lbs higher mark at Wincanton on Saturday, and that Hereford form is strong. Orrisdale can improve again returned to three miles.
Over to Southwell and I have given up on the Colin Tizzard runners in the short term such was their level of performance on Friday and Saturday although I am writing this prior to Lostintranslation’s Denman bid on Sunday.
Faustinovic remains well handicapped over fences but he is easily overlooked considering the stable form and my two against the field in the opener are Holdbacktheriver and Checkitout (1.15) although it would be wrong to suggest the Nigel Twiston-Davies stable are firing on all cylinders with four of their last five runners failing to complete. ** Please note the stable had had four runners at Newbury on Sunday and all ran very well including an impressive winner for the yard which renders the Saturday form irrelevant.
The each way selection – 6s with Boylesports – disappointed at Market Rasen on his last start but that was over seven weeks ago and his second at Bangor-on-Dee from a 1lb higher mark on his penultimate outing is decent form in the context of this race.
Holdbacktheriver fell four out when, seemingly, going best at Chepstow last time. Things didn’t look good for a while following his fall, but he got up in time and can race from the same mark this afternoon. He is a worthy market leader but I would be disappointed if Checkitout was out of the money.
Falco Blitz jumped out to his left when second at Kempton in a hot handicap over Christmas from a 2lbs lower mark. He will appreciate the return to a left-hand track, but he is short enough in the betting at 7/4 and Quoi De Neuf (1.45) is just preferred.
The selection has been off the track since fading close home at Aintree at the beginning of December. That was only his second start over fences and his second to Canelo on his chase debut from a 2lb higher mark is very good form when you consider the winner is now rated 17lbs higher. It looks a match to my eyes and I will be also looking at markets without the Henderson market leader on Monday morning.
Can You Call (3.50) cost his present connections 50k after landing a Uttoxeter Bumper at the end of October and has run a couple of good races in defeat over hurdles including when runner up over two miles at Chepstow last time. I hope it is a good day for the owners given the Ruckers’ look to have three very good chances of getting their famous colours in the winners’ enclosure. I hope Adam Wedge makes plenty of use of the selection who, I am convinced, will appreciate further in time. The 9/4 with 10bet is fair.
At Fairyhouse I hope to see Where It All Began (5.00) go one better than when runner up at Limerick on debut. A half-brother to several winners including Rathvinden today’s 2m 3f+ trip should suit, and he is taken to score from Fair Frontieres who was beaten just a head in a maiden hurdle at Navan last month. The 7/4 with a host of firms including 10bet & William Hill looks fair.