Get Together; keep with Cross

  • By: Nick Grant
  • Last Updated: February 13 2013, 20:01 GMT

Nick Grant feels Close Together is a standout selection for Wednesday's action - he has a tip for every UK and Irish race.

Peddlers Cross: Returns to action at Musselburgh

KEMPTON: 5.00 Brave Decision, 5.30 Norwegian Reward, 6.00 Picansort, 6.30 Studfarmer, 7.00 Light From Mars, 7.30 Commercial, 8.00 Exopuntia, 8.30 Scepticism.

LINGFIELD: 1.30 Divine Rule, 2.00 CLOSE TOGETHER (NAP), 2.30 Broughtons Bandit, 3.00 Jimmy The Snooze, 3.30 Cousin Khee, 4.00 Ellie In The Pink, 4.30 Safwaan.

MUSSELBURGH: 1.10 Be My Deputy, 1.40 Peddlers Cross, 2.10 Cayman Islands, 2.40 Bogside, 3.10 Winter Alchemy, 3.40 Ifandbutwhy, 4.10 Buckstruther, 4.40 Amisfield Lad.

SOUTHWELL: 1.50 MJ Woodward, 2.20 Mister Bob, 2.50 Masterful Act, 3.20 Hiddon Coin, 3.50 Dubawi Island, 4.20 Admiralty, 4.50 Dewala.

THURLES: 2.05 Ma Belle Aimie, 2.35 Time Please, 3.05 Luke's Benefit, 3.35 Are Ya Right Chief, 4.05 Cilliseal, 4.35 Missie Ella, 5.05 Afatcat.

DOUBLE: Close Together and Cousin Khee.

Officials at Musselburgh will be delighted with the calibre of horse that has been in attendance at the Edinburgh venue of late, and welcome another on Wednesday in the shape of former Champion Hurdle runner-up Peddlers Cross.

The Donald McCain-trained eight-year-old will not be much of a betting proposition in the Howies Restaurants Edinburgh Hurdle, his first start over obstacles since last year's Festival, but his performance could have quite an impact on the Cheltenham markets.

He impressed sufficiently in travelling well for a long way in a 'jumpers' bumper' at Kempton recently to suggest he could yet play a part at the big meeting next month.

Racing over an intermediate trip of two-miles-six here, McCain is likely to be much wiser after this as to whether the Champion Hurdle or World Hurdle is the way he will be heading.

Cayman Islands showed a liking for the speedy nature of this track on his last start and is expected to win again in the Country Refreshments Novices' Hurdle.

Quite useful on the Flat in France, he is now with the bang-in-form John Ferguson and while fully effective over two miles, the nature of this track should mean that the step up to two and a half is not an undue hindrance.

On a busy day of racing on the all-weather, Close Together stands out in the Your Guide To Lingfield At Handicap at the Surrey track.

Trained in Epsom by Robert Mills, she had three outings last season, not showing an awful lot on debut over the minimum trip at Windsor in April but producing more after what was a lengthy break at Warwick in October.

Stepped up to a mile for his final start on the Polytrack here a couple of weeks later she saw the trip out well to end the year on a winning note.

The Dylan Thomas filly returned for her first try at a handicap here earlier in the month and did well to finish a staying-on second after pulling hard throughout the early stages.

Bred for trips like this, and with the freshness hopefully taken out of her, she is very interesting off the same mark, especially with emerging apprentice Robert Tart taking off 7lb.

Broughtons Bandit shaped as though he could be winning again soon when last seen and how the market speaks before the two-mile Crowhurst Handicap should be informative.

A horse that stays well, the money came for him before his reappearance run here last month, his first outing since May.

Faced with a mile and a half trip short of his best, he was just outpaced in the finish, failing by half a length.

He is actually quite lightly raced for a six-year-old at this level and presumably shows a bit at home for a yard that knows the time of day.

Cousin Khee should be hard to beat in the Breathe Spa At Marriott Lingfield Maiden Stakes.

Trained by Hughie Morrison, the six-year-old was eighth in the 2011 Champion Bumper and conqueror of the useful Ericht in a novice hurdle in January last year, and has proven very effective in the recent spate of 'jumpers' bumpers'.

Faced with a different proposition in a similar race to this on his debut under Flat rules at the turn of the month, he was desperately unfortunate to be chinned right on the line.

It is encouraging George Baker keeps the ride.

Best bet at Southwell could come in the opener where the red-hot MJ Woodward bids to make it a hat-trick in the Casino At Handicap.

He has just got his head in front on his last two starts at Wolverhampton, which has meant the handicapper has not been able to be harsh, and he has been equally effective here in the past.

Joe Fanning gets on well with the Paul Green-trained colt.

Scepticism looks like one of those Mark Johnston horses that will pay their way on the all-weather so keep him on-side in the Racing Plus Chase Day 23.02.13 Handicap at Kempton which rounds out the night.

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