There is a competitive card at Wetherby this afternoon which is excellent news for the track who have lost their last couple of meetings to the elements.
The Novice Chase over 2m 5f is a hot little race and Chantry House will be a warm order to bounce back following a below par performance at Cheltenham last time when the soft ground was blamed. Conditions are likely to be similarly testing this afternoon although he was visually impressive on his chase debut when scoring at Ascot.
That said I did not think he jumped very well early in the race and his market rival Pic D’Orhy came down three out when going every bit as well as the winner.
Trained by Nicky Henderson the 7-y-old finished third in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle back in March and has long been a leading candidate for the Marsh Novices’ Chase although a certain Envoi Allen does stand in his way. He will have to win well in this company if he is going to give connections of the unbeaten favourite something to worry about back at Cheltenham next month.
Coconut Splash (1.05) holds no fancy engagements but receives 6lbs from the market leader and has run two very good races in defeat over fences this term. A winner of his sole point-to-point the selection has only had five career starts under rules but has yet to finish out of the first two when completing and is open to further improvement. One note of caution he was pulled out of a race at Chepstow last month on account of the heavy ground. The selection recives 6lbs from the market leader and is 7/4 with William Hill.
Embole (1.35) was heavily backed at Plumpton last time but was caught out of his ground before keeping on from the rear. That was over the minimum trip and today’s additional three furlongs should suit. He gets a narrow ew vote ahead of Sawpit Sienna who is another who looked ready for a return to further when runner up at Plumpton last time from a 1lb lower mark. The 6s with William Hill looked a shade too big and the ew selection is 4s with the same firm at the time of posting.
Destinee Royale steps up to 3m for the first time having ran as well as could be expected in listed company last time when not knocked about when it was evident, she was out of her depth. She could easily bounce back, but she has stamina to prove in such a competitive heat. Sigurd was entered at Carlisle yesterday and is unlikely to take up today’s engagement unless he is an early casualty.
The form of Commit Or Quit’s good second over C&D has been let down by the subsequent runs of the first and third but he is clearly in good heart at present and his course record reads 12. Marginal preference, however, is for the bottom weigh Leverock Lass (3.12) who came home alone over today’s C&D on ground that was bordering on unraceable over Christmas. She broke the hearts of her opponents on that occasion but jumped well and could be called the winner with a circuit to go. The each way recommendation is 5s with BetVictor who are offering 4 places.
At Hereford a market move for Minella Bobo would be worth noting in his first-time cheekpieces for Rebecca Curtis, but the grey has gone backwards since running well at Uttoxeter on his chase debut. His point win came on yielding ground and his hurdle success on good ground. He is likely to come into his own on a better surface and remains one to keep on side.
Favori De Sivola (3.05) had done us a favour on good ground at Taunton before following up on heavy ground from a 7lbs lower mark last month. He is taken to land the hat-trick for Nick Williams who has his string in good order. The selection is 9/4 with BetVictor.