Shuil set for success
Anita Chambers says Shuil Royale looks to have a good shot at glory in Newbury's Zenergi Novices' Handicap Chase on Friday.
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DONCASTER: 2.10 Mecox Bay, 2.45 Lets Get Serious, 3.20 Grimley Girl, 3.50 Brave Spartacus, 4.25 Life And Soul, 5.00 White Diamond, 5.30 Favorite Girl.
DUNDALK: 5.50 Bangalore Diamond, 6.20 Diesel Ten, 6.50 Alvar, 7.20 Akasaka, 7.50 Fairylike, 8.20 Waterloo Sunrise, 8.50 Lady X, 9.20 Noverre Princess.
LINGFIELD: 2.00 Cyflymder, 2.30 Alezanna, 3.05 Mirth, 3.40 Danziger, 4.15 Skytrain, 4.50 CHOKIDAR (NAP), 5.20 Zhuba.
NEWBURY: 1.50 Oscan, 2.20 Kenai Peninsula, 2.55 Silver Roque, 3.30 Shuil Royale, 4.00 Bladoun, 4.35 Reginaldinho, 5.10 Woodland Walk.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.40 Sommersturm, 6.10 Modern Lady, 6.40 Hannahs Turn, 7.10 Ifan, 7.40 Bert The Alert, 8.10 Scribe, 8.40 Angelena Ballerina.
DOUBLE: Chokidar and Shuil Royale.
Shuil Royale's jumping has let him down a bit this term but if he can pull it all together, he would have a good shot at glory in Newbury's Zenergi Novices' Handicap Chase.
The eight-year-old was a decent enough performer over hurdles but his transition to fences has been far from smooth with a second place the best of his four efforts.
The horse that narrowly beat him that day has won again since but Shuil Royale has paid the price for some sloppy fencing of late.
Rated 126 over hurdles, he certainly has the ability to make his mark in this sphere if David Arbuthnot can polish up his jumping skills.
Silver Roque will have to be winning the Berry Bros & Rudd Handicap Chase if he is to justify his Grand Annual entry at the Festival.
The seven-year-old enjoyed an excellent pre-Christmas campaign, winning one of three starts and being placed on the other two occasions, making the most of the decent ground in the process.
He leapt up 14lb in the ratings and posted possibly his best effort yet when third at Cheltenham against some decent yardsticks in November on what was his most recent outing.
Silver Roque is coming back from a bit of a layoff here but has shown he can run well when fresh in the past, so that is hardly a negative.
Brave Spartacus has made giant leaps this term, rising from a mark of 89 to his current perch of 130 after no less than four wins.
Keith Reveley sends him into battle once again in the 32Red.com Handicap Chase at Doncaster after having to settle for a brave third at Catterick in early February.
He set a strong pace that day and perhaps just paid for it a little against a lower-weighted rival in the finish.
Chokidar should be ready to build on a promising return to action as he lines up in the 3rd Barry Gurr Memorial Handicap at Lingfield.
The five-year-old does not boast the most impressive of strike-rates, having not tasted victory in well over a year, but there was much to like about his recent second at this track.
Limited to just two starts for Scott Dixon last year after leaving the care of David Nicholls, Chokidar looked a fair recruit in claiming place finishes on both occasions.
However, following a fourth at Wolverhampton in October, he was then off the track until late in January with Dixon closing down his operation for just over a month due to a dip in his horses' form and issues with the wet weather.
Chokidar looked none the worse for the impromptu break when beaten a length and a half on his return, perhaps just lacking that extra racing edge in the finish.
He should strip fitter for that run and must have excellent claims here.
Skytrain merits a mention in the Marsh Green Handicap as he has his first attempt in this sphere.
Mark Johnston's charge is stepping up to seven furlongs for the first time after three starts in sprint maidens last year yielded little joy.
A longer trip looks sure to suit on breeding and he has already run well on the Polytrack at Wolverhampton before.
Bert The Alert turned in a decent effort at Lingfield recently and is one to follow at Dunstall Park in the Hotel & Conferencing At Wolverhampton Handicap.
Winner of a claimer in late December, he returned to handicap company last time and ran with credit to finish a length and a quarter adrift of Conducting in what was a slowly-run affair.
The winner benefited from a shrewd ride that day and Bert The Alert just could not pick him up in the dying strides.