Our resident tipster is hoping to take a few quid off the Uttoxeter bookies.
It’s 2000 Guineas day at Newmarket and you’ll find my tip for that Classic elsewhere on this site, but keep reading as I fancy a couple of longshots at my local jumps meeting at Uttoxeter.
It’s an eight-race card and it’s competitive stuff too, despite the pathetic levels of prize money on offer. It makes you wonder how some of the smaller trainers make it pay but Andy Turnell can expect a few more pay days from his WADDINGTOWN HERO, who is strongly fancied to follow up his recent impressive Ffos Las victory in this afternoon’s 2m5f handicap chase (4.45pm)
The eight-year-old was coming good on just his fourth start over fences at the Welsh track and he was perhaps unlucky not to score at Huntingdon previously, having been bumped a couple of times on the run-in. The handicapper has raised him 9lb to a new mark of 90, but he would have won with that much extra on his back (and some!) and I suspect he has at least another stone in hand. The cheek-pieces he’s worn the last twice have clearly made a difference and this dual point-to-point winner should have no problem with today’s slightly longer trip, with his liking for good ground also proven. He’s my banker bet of the day and I hope he obliges as the rest of the card is tricky.
I’m a signed up member of the Sean Bowen fan club and have unashamedly backed him at 25/1 for this season’s jockeys’ title as I think he will continue to ride plenty of winners for Paul Nicholls and will also pick up loads of fancied mounts for other yards – you can still get 20/1 with Paddy Power if you’re quick. We’re of course tying up our money until next April but, providing he stays healthy and in contention, we’ll have an interest in each of his mounts with the promise of a bumper payout at the end.
If you’re looking for a more immediate return from the young jockey, you should consider backing LILLY’S LEGEND, his ride in the closing novices’ handicap hurdle (5.55pm). The mare has little worthwhile form to recommend her apart from a third (of nine) in a bumper back in January 2014. However, she’s lightly-raced and the step up to 3m could be what she needs being a daughter of Midnight Legend, who is a real influence for stamina. A handicap mark of just 75 means she carries no weight and her trainer Mark Walford has an eye-catching record here. He’s sent out eight runners from his North Yorkshire base in the past five seasons and three (38%) have obliged for a £1 level-stakes profit of £14.33, with two of his three (67%) hurdle runners doing the business. The fact he’s calling on the services of Bowen for the first time this afternoon is a tip in itself.
At an even bigger price, I fancy the Neil King-trained ASHBRITTLE to go well in the extended 2m4f handicap hurdle (4.10pm). The eight-year-old has not been seen since finishing third in a Fontwell handicap 574 days ago, but has been dropped 6lb by the handicapper since and his up-and-coming stable has been amongst the winners of late, with the trainer’s last six runners finishing 153131. A useful dual purpose horse when trained by David Pipe, who deemed him good enough to run at Royal Ascot and in the Cesarewitch, he still has plenty of time on his side and gets plenty of weight from his main rivals. That all makes him worth risking at 14/1.