14:25 Ascot Sat 18 January 2020
Dual novice winner second in what is beginning to look a poor renewal of the Supreme Novices at Cheltenham. Not looked a natural over fences so reverts to hurdles and an interesting runner first-time in a handicap for bang in-form yard.
Progressive second-season hurdler hosed up first-time out at Fontwell (2m1½f, soft) before finishing a solid third in a warm Sandown handicap. Must improve again to defy this mark but that's all he's done so far.
Most progressive last season and won this off a 2lb lower mark. Three seconds over fences this season perhaps marginally disappointing but not enough to think he's lost any form. Big player now back over hurdles.
Won first two for Nicky Henderson and lightly raced thereafter. Signs of a revival when third at Newbury last time in a 2m4½f handicap of a similar ilk. Another step forward needed but possible with yard red-hot.
Grade 1 placed in France and highly touted by champion trainer himself for last season's Triumph where he disappointed. Fell on only run since in French Grade 1 but serious danger he's well in here off 146 and could be the answer to the puzzle.
Well-backed and duly delivered in a warm Haydock handicap when last seen in November. 10lb hike in the weights demands more of him here but as just a six-year-old he probably has more improvement to come.
Off 706 days when winning a 1m7½f handicap here in November '18; his fourth course score. Four uninspiring efforts since mean that hopes lie with wind surgery reviving him today.
Showed liking for this game after transferring to Neil King last term, winning at Newbury in March when upped to this sort of trip first time. Pulled up in both starts this season but had wind op since last run. This toughest task to date.
Last Year's Winner
|T: N A Twiston-DaviesJ: Thomas Bellamy|
Bold Plan (3/1), Soul Emotion (10/3), Ballymoy (9/2), Song For Someone (7/1), Pic D'Orhy (7/1), Thomas Darby (8/1), Jolly's Cracked It (14/1), The Knot Is Tied (20/1)
- Pic D'Orhy
- Bold Plan
Log in for access to this exclusive content.
Geizy Teizy can repeat a recent course win at Wolverhampton back at Dunstall Park on Monday, according to Keith Hamer.
Matt Brocklebank is back in the Nap hot-seat on Monday and he's heading to the all-weather meeting at Wolverhampton for the bet of the day.
Matt Brocklebank looks ahead to the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury and recommends antepost bets at 14/1 and 20/1, including Jamie Snowden's novice Thebannerkingrebel.