15:55 Hexham Thu 14 March 2019
Without a win over fences (0-7), but is evidently a stout stayer on soft ground; solid since wind surgery, posting an excellent seasonal reappearance at Ayr (second) in January; carries a very big weight.
Ploughed through the mud when ultimately scoring with ease (by 7L) on her first attempt at this marathon trip over C&D in November (soft); 9lb higher today - ran well off a similar mark in Kelso's Borders National (fourth).
Talented novice; has found life more difficult in handicap company but is slipping back to a more manageable mark; no issues with heavy ground; first-time blinkers replace the cheekpieces which were worn at Carlisle in February (fifth).
Thorough stayer; 9lb lower than when winning the 2017 Cambridgeshire National at Huntingdon (3m7f, soft); finished just behind today's rival Weststreet in the Surrey National at Lingfield (3m5f, soft) 24-days ago.
Oliver Sherwood is a rare visitor to Hexham (0-3), so this soft ground hurdles winner catches the eye; kept on to finish 2½L third to Le Reve (Court Frontier fourth) in the Surrey National at Lingfield (3m5f, soft) 24-days ago.
Made all when gamely winning this race from a 3lb higher mark in 2018 - taking his Hexham record to 2-2. However, he flopped in identical conditions over C&D in November (pulled up) in the race won by Total Assets; can he bounce back to form?
Lightly-raced, so could have more to offer over a marathon trip (dam L'Aventure was a 4m winner); has fallen 11lb in the weights since introduced to fences at Newcastle in December; unconvincing thus far.
Hasn't won since completing a hurdles hat-trick over an extended 3m1f at Carlisle (heavy) in February 2018; hasn't competed over fences since May 2016 (when with Giles Smyly) - feasibly weighted, albeit is hardly the most appealing.
Better chaser than a hurdler; 7lb higher than when beating Frank The Slink by 19L over 3m here in October (soft); well worth trying over a marathon trip switched back from hurdles and more interesting than some of the others.
3-6 over fences (if factoring in his PTP form); fended off some very questionable characters on an absolute bog at Newcastle (2m7f+ heavy) in April 2018; scarcely seen since; should strip fitter for a January hurdles spin; 3lb higher.
Not in the best of form of late, so is on the slide down the weights; fell at the 17th when sent off 5/2f for this race in 2017, and beaten just 1½L by Kilcullen Flem in 2018; these conditions are fine.
Not the force of old and competes from 11lb out of the handicap which makes his task much trickier (riders claim helpful); no chance with the first two (third) when beaten 35L by Total Assets over C&D in November; look elsewhere.
Last Year's Winner
|T: P A KirbyJ: A Nicol|
Court Frontier (7/2), Weststreet (9/2), Kilcullen Flem (6/1), Total Assets (13/2), Very First Time (7/1), Caventara (15/2), Finaghy Ayr (12/1), Misfits (14/1), Teddy Tee (14/1), Alto Des Mottes (18/1), Letemgo (40/1), Bertalus (66/1)
- Very First Time
- Court Frontier
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