13:45 Ludlow Wed 5 December 2018
Had various options last weekend (incl at Newcastle), but lines up here instead off the back of an excellent second to Present Man in Wincanton's Listed Badger Ales Trophy (3m1f, good); raised 4lb since; handled cut in his Irish PTP days.
A difficult character who ran a reasonably solid race in the Southern National at Fontwell (3m3f+) last month, albeit he was beaten 17L (fourth) by Shanroe Santos; still early days post wind surgery, so that's a pertinent factor worth considering.
3-3 over fences in France (2m2f-2m4f) but is 0-5 on these shores for David Pipe; pulled-up on her seasonal reappearance at Carlisle (3m2f), so would need to come on plenty for that run in order to be competitive; wears first-time cheekpieces.
Still a maiden over fences (0-8), but in truth was mugged on the line after doing all of the hard-work from the front in an Exeter match (3m, good to firm) in October; wet forecast the chief concern.
5lb higher than when beating today's rival Dauphine Ereine by 6L here (3m, good to soft) in April; Charlie Deutsch back on board for the first time this season, so no surprise if this 10yo (veterans eligible) knocks at the door.
Has made the frame on both starts over fences so far, including when a 7L runner-up to Clondaw Rigger at Chepstow (2m7f+, good to soft) latest; competes from an untouched handicap mark (115).
Has a decent strike-rate over fences under rules (5-17); 7lb higher than for last month's C&D win (beat Hepijeu by 1¼L); further rain wouldn't prove overly problematic, but this is another step up the ladder in terms of competitiveness.
His Ludlow record (2m-3m) since 2017 reads 2312, and he continues to perform with an admirable degree of consistency. However, he races from 9lb out of the handicap today, so that's an obvious negative; on that basis highly unlikely.
Last Year's Winner
|T: Dr R D P NewlandJ: B S Hughes|
Gardiners Hill (5/2), Morianour (3/1), Sumkindofking (9/2), Dauphine Ereine (9/2), Beau Du Brizais (8/1), Uhlan Bute (14/1), Gingili (16/1), Pembroke House (25/1)
- Uhlan Bute
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