The Racing Post website stated on Tuesday morning that there were showers forecast for Haydock Park today ahead of their seven-race card, yet the BBC suggested there was no rain due to hit the track. The ground was given as a mix of soft and good to soft – take your pick.
There is a terrific two-and-a-half-mile handicap chase and Keep Rolling looks a threat to all at the foot of the weights having made such a promising chase at Chepstow when he was caught close home, having set a very strong pace, by a most progressive horse of Tim Vaughan. The third has franked the form and a 3lbs rise is very fair. Micheal Nolan takes over in the saddle with Richard Johnson going to Hereford for one ride on a 7/1 shot. Is there a changing of the guard in Minehead or perhaps an announcement imminent?
I thought Glenduff (1.30) travelled like the best horse in the race when third at Doncaster over 3m on his chase debut and this drop back in trip should suit Nicky Richards’ 7-y-old who runs in the colours of Trevor Hemmings who loves to have winners at the track. The selection was entered in a race at Carlisle on Sunday but connections have decided to come here. The ew recommendation was put in at 6/1 with William Hill on Tuesday and that looks fair. Captain Blackpearl is another to consider with Tom George having his string in such good form.
Ey Up Rocky (2.02) ran well over the minimum trip on heavy ground at Ludlow last month on what was his first start for 726 days. Jonjo O’Neill has given him four weeks to get over that run, and today’s better ground and extra distance should suit. I feel the trainer is almost obliged to keep him over hurdles given how late it is in the season, but this 8-y-old will surely jump a fence sooner rather than later. The selection is 10/3 with BetVictor.
Do note a market move for Kajooki. He has not seen the track since disappointing back in the autumn, but he can go well fresh and is visored for the first-time by Nicky Richards.
The feature race is the Tim Maloney Chase over 3m 4f and Destinee Royale has been raised 9lbs for a facile win at Wetherby last time over three miles. She has won two of her four career starts over fences, but this is a much better race, and she must prove her stamina for the extra distance. She is plenty short enough in the betting.
Jockey Kai Lenihan has only one career winner to his name but that was when he guided Seaston Spirit (3.12) to a comfortable victory over hurdles back in November and he is taken to double up on Oliver Sherwood’s 8-y-o in the feature contest.
The ew selection – 13/2 with MansionBet – did not appear in love with the tight right-handed turns at Wincanton last time and the stable had a welcome winner at Kempton on Saturday. His previous win in the Sussex National at Plumpton from a 3lbs lower mark is good form. This is a big day for his young jockey. Samuel Jackson did us a favour in the Devon National last time and was balloted out of the Midlands National at the weekend. He looks the biggest danger to the selection.
The competitive 2m 5f handicap hurdle at Market Rasen can see Gunsight Ridge (3.30) make it third time lucky in handicaps for Olly Murphy and Aidan Coleman. The selection will make up into a more than useful novice chaser next term but there is surely more to come from him over timber and he can take what is a valuable midweek prize. He finished third at Kempton last time over this trip and I hope to see Coleman make plenty of use of his charge if Rosie And Millie dictates just a steady gallop as she steps back up in trip. The 15/8 with 10Bet looks about right.
At Hereford Hudson Yard (3.55) can make a winning handicap debut from what looks a decent mark for Jamie Snowden. The mare – 2s with Boylesports – was beaten a length giving Style It Out 5lbs at Catterick last time and the winner followed up at Ayr earlier in the month and is now rated 121. With that in mind Hudson Yard looks fairly treated off 116.