Keith Hamer previews Friday's cards around the country with his best two bets, including First Flow for Kim Bailey, coming at Ascot.
NAP: First Flow (1.00 Ascot)
Next Best: Oakley (3.45 Ascot)
First Flow can play the role of party pooper in the Sky Sports Racing Novices' Chase in the opener at Ascot.
Nicky Henderson is having to field two of - what he hopes - will be his better novices against each other on Friday in Angels Breath and Birchdale, because of a lack of alternative options, and both are making their chasing debuts.
Crucially Kim Bailey's First Flow has had a run, and a good one at that, at Uttoxeter.
He spoilt his chance when jumping to the right there, so Ascot should suit him better - and he has always looked made for fences.
Despite not keeping straight last time, the seven-year-old was far from disgraced in running 2018 Supreme Novices' Hurdle winner Summerville Boy to four lengths.
He made it to the track just once last season because of quick ground - but he rattled up a sequence in his novice days over hurdles, culminating with a Grade Two success at Haydock.
The Kings Writ signed off last season with a fine effort at Sandown, and if fit enough still looks feasibly handicapped in the Creativevents Handicap Chase.
Kayley Woollacott has booked Bryony Frost for the first time, and if she can get the eight-year-old into a rhythm then the pair could take all the beating.
Jonjo O'Neill has been desperate to run Cloth Cap since his fair comeback run at Chepstow, but for one reason or another he has had to wait until the inthepaddock.co.uk Handicap Chase.
Third in the bet365 Gold Cup at the end of last season, he prefers a test of stamina and good ground - so he ran very respectably behind Ballyoptic first time out when fourth on soft.
Of course, the winner has franked that form by going in again in the Charlie Hall at Wetherby - so as usual the Chepstow event looks like it is going to work out well.
With the ground drying up, Cloth Cap looks sure to go well.
Oakley should come on for a fine effort at Cheltenham last month - his first run since January - and go two places better in the Rewarding Ownership with the ROA Handicap Hurdle.
Philip Hobbs' six-year-old got his second wind to fill minor honours behind Benny's Bridge - and with that under his belt, he can strike here.
On the Tapeta at Newcastle, Castlehill Retreat has fine prospects of following up his breakthrough course win.
He had no trouble seeing out the seven furlongs to get off the mark last time, and can double up in the Ladbrokes Nursery Handicap.
Ben Haslam's gelding has an extra furlong to negotiate on his return, but it is worth taking a chance on the progressive son of Casamento.
Bedtime Bella is top weight for good reason in the closing Betway Handicap, and ought to be able to justify her status.
Mick Appleby's filly has had a two-month break since winding up her turf campaign with a good third under a 7lb claimer over this trip at Pontefract.
She was effective on a wide variety of surfaces through the summer, winning twice for Appleby following her switch from Karl Burke's yard.
Her return to the all-weather, for the first time since her debut 12 runs and seven months ago, may prove a profitable move for current connections.
Earlier on the card, King Ragnar and Landing Night are both of interest.
King Ragnar has an experience edge over almost the entire field in the Ladbrokes Where The Nation Plays Novice Stakes.
This stiffer track also looks likely to suit better than Chelmsford, where he was soundly beaten into second last time but by an opponent who may well be an above-average recruit - based on the company he kept on turf.
Dual-purpose trainer Rebecca Menzies' runners are always of note, and Landing Night is no exception in the Betway Heed Your Hunch Handicap.
The Kodiac gelding is not about to start improving on his 69th career start, at the age of seven.
He has already won nine times, though, and appeared to be gearing up for double-figures with an encouraging course-and-distance third last time.
The re-opposing Be Proud has a case on the book to confirm his marginal superiority - but Landing Night has won previously off much higher marks and seems ready to take advantage of his current rating.
Back over jumps at Catterick, George Ridsdale is worth backing after he showed the benefit of a fair first effort over jumps at Wetherby by making no mistake at Musselburgh.
The Mick Easterby-trained three-year-old can make his experience count in the Watch RacingTV With Free Trial Now Juvenile Hurdle.
Meteorite ran well for a long way on his first start for 203 days at Aintree last month, and is a sporting selection for the Waiters Group Handicap Hurdle at Ffos Las.
It was only on the dash from the last that Tom Symonds' five-year-old ran out of steam.
That was a maiden event, and he begins his handicap career on a fair mark.
Onurbike has gone up only 14lb for winning his last three, and O'Neill's stayer can continue his rich vein of form in the Dunraven Windows Handicap Chase.
Sporting Life Tips
ASCOT: 1.00 FIRST FLOW (NAP), 1.30 Fred, 2.05 Master Debonair, 2.40 The Kings Writ, 3.15 Cloth Cap, 3.45 Oakley.
CATTERICK: 12.15 Takingitallin, 12.45 Jeu de Mots, 1.20 George Ridsdale, 1.50 Captain Moirette, 2.25 Shanroe, 3.00 Manwell, 3.35 Cockney Beau.
DUNDALK: 5.15 Ken's Sam's, 5.45 Lady De Vesci, 6.15 Latchet, 6.45 Assurance, 7.15 Psyche, 7.45 Bandiuc Eile, 8.15 Calling Time, 8.45 Loaded.
FFOS LAS: 1.10 Onurbike, 1.40 College Oak, 2.15 Jack Valentine, 2.50 Beni Light, 3.25 Meteorite, 3.55 Poniente.
NEWCASTLE: 3.30 Global Humor, 4.00 King Ragnar, 4.30 Landing Night, 5.00 Robotique Danseur, 5.30 Castlehill Retreat, 6.00 Silk Mill Blue, 6.30 Sixties Coed, 7.00 Bedtime Bella.
DOUBLE: First Flow and Oakley.