Catching Pigeons: Gossip and tips from the gallops

Get all the latest whispers from the major training centres
Get all the latest whispers from the major training centres

Our gallops reporter rounds up all the well-fancied runners ahead of the weekend's action, including Friend Or Foe at Newbury.

Get In The Queue (5.00 Newbury)

1
511-10OR: 128D
1/3
Last RunWatch last race

Get In The Queue can end Noel Fehily's illustrious career on a high note in the Grade 2 Goffs UK Spring Sale Bumper at Newbury on Saturday.

Fehily announced after his Cheltenham Festival win that he will retire in a "couple of weeks", and Harry Fry's exciting youngster immediately became the target ride for his swan song in the saddle.

Strongly fancied to win the Bumper at the Festival, connections decided to aim for this valuable event instead, and hopes are high he can defy topweight against some potentially useful opposition. His two wins have been very impressive, and his rider was really impressed with his runaway success at Exeter last time.

He has progressed again from that success, and should prove up to conceding 21lb to well-bred Legends Ryde, who hails from the in-form Jamie Snowden stable and looks a possible each-way proposition.

She Might Bite (3.15 Newbury)

9
611-2OR: 119BF
5/1
Last RunWatch last race

She Might Bite can foil Fehily and the Fry-trained Outofthisworld in the EBF & TBA Mares National Hunt Novices Hurdle Final.

Nicky Henderson has a great record in this race and the daughter of Scorpion owes him plenty after a frustrating campaign.

It should be pointed out however, that she was very unlucky to be brought down when travelling strongly at Ludlow last time, and might well have won had she not hit the turf.

None the worse for that spill, she looks nicely handicapped on the way she works at home, and gets a handy 5lb from her West Country rival.

Friend Or Foe (2.40 Newbury)

5
411-8OR: 128
4/1
Last RunWatch last race

Paul Nicholls runs one of his Cheltenham fancies Friend Or Foe in the Be Wiser Insurance Juvenile Handicap Hurdle.

The former champion trainer was thwarted in his plan to win the Boodles Handicap at the Festival with the French-bred, after he fell foul of the ballot.

He will be hoping for compensation here and this comfortable winner of a Taunton juvenile on his only British start so far, looks ready to make the most of a lenient-looking handicap mark.

Sunrise Ruby (4.25 Newbury)

12
510-7OR: -D
15/8
Last RunWatch last race

Sunrise Ruby, a stablemate of She Might Bite, looked a shade unlucky not to win her debut effort over timber when well fancied here in January and she deserves another chance in the Johnny Haine Memorial Novices Hurdle.

Strong Pursuit (2.05 Newbury)

2
911-8OR: 136C
7/2
Last RunWatch last race

Gala Ball (3.50 Newbury)

1
911-12OR: 144C
13/8
Last RunWatch last race

It often pays to stick to horses with little recent racing over the past few months at this late stage of the season and Philip Hobbs fields two likely lads to fit this profile, Strong Pursuit in the opening Insure With Be Wiser Handicap Chase, and Gala Ball in the Doom Bar Handicap Chase.

The latter ran a blinder on his return from a very long absence when second in a valuable event here three weeks ago, and should be able to overcome a 3lb rise in his rating.

Stone Of Destiny (3.45 Lingfield)

2
2
49-13OR: 104D
11/4
Last RunWatch last race

On the Flat, Andrew Balding’s Stone Of Destiny has been performing well both at home and abroad this winter and should show his appreciation for a drop in class in the Betway Casino Handicap at Lingfield.

Remarkably, this is his first appearance at handicap level and he does not look too harshly treated.

Mohtarrif (2.35 Lingfield)

4
4
39-2OR: -
7/2
Last RunWatch last race

Marcus Tregoning's Mohtarrif ran on to good effect in the closing stages of his debut effort after a slow start and problems in running on his debut at Chelmsford three weeks ago, and he should step up on the performance in the Ladbrokes Home Of The Odds Boost Novice Stakes.

Crossing The Line (7.30 Kempton)

4
3
49-1OR: 100BFD
5/1
Last RunWatch last race

Crossing The Line, a stablemate of Stone Of Destiny, showed improvement throughout 2018 and is fancied to return to winning ways after an 11 week break in the 32Red British Stallion Studs Conditions Stakes at Kempton.

The four-year-old gets a handy 8lb from recent winner and likely favourite Cardsharp.

Madame Tantzy (7.00 Kempton)

5
1
38-10OR: -
11/10
Last RunWatch last race

It may pay to take a chance with Madame Tantzy in the 32Red On The App Store Fillies Novice Stakes (Div II).

Eve Johnson Houghton should know plenty about this half-sister to her Group 1-winning miler Accidental Agent.

The trainer's family handled at least three generations of this talented equine family and there was plenty to like about her only effort so far in a back-end maiden at Newbury.

She will improve plenty in the weeks ahead, but this looks an ideal option for her first outing of her second campaign.


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