Saturday’s mediocre cards won’t provide much of a tonic for racing fans, but Seymour Biz has picked out 4 nags for your Lucky 15 – including a horse expected to go in either the Edinburgh Gin Handicap Hurdle or the Liz Adam Memorial Handicap Chase.
A reasonably quiet week on the racing front this week due to the build up to the Grand National next week. We have two meetings on television this week, on the all-weather at Kempton and over the sticks at Kelso, it’s nice to see the cameras at one of the more “unfashionable” courses like Kelso. The track was originally a flat course when opened in the 19th century, it is situated on the Duke of Roxburghe’s estate in the Scottish Borders a really beautiful part of the world. Television are covering four races from the Scottish course and I have given a write up on three of them, all Class 2 races with some high class competitors including a runner up from Haydock last week who can go one better here. At Kempton there is a Class 1 fillies Stakes I will be casting my eye over, this race is the highlight of the day on the all-weather track.
Firstly I’ll look at the 2.25 at Kelso the totescoop6 Handicap Hurdle and last weeks runner up Chti Balko, he ran a fine race and just lost out on the run in, he will strip fitter and can take this contest. He goes well on soft ground and it is his ideal distance. Keith Dalgleish runs Taxmeifyoucan and he will be a strong contender after his wins on the all weather, he is a course and distance winner but I think the handicapper has got hold of him now. Oxford Blu flopped at Cheltenham and may be worth another chance, but I think that race broke his heart and his appetite for racing needs to return.
At 3.00 is the Liz Adam Memorial Handicap Chase with some favourite old timers among the runners, Firth Of The Clyde is thirteen now but he has been lightly raced this season and is not without a chance. Last years first and second are back this year, Yala Enki and Seldom Inn, the former has top weight and that is a big ask, I would fancy Seldom Inn to finish in front of him. However the horse I do like in this race is Lastbutnoleast trained by Donald McCain, a beaten favourite last time at Leicester but it was reported after the race that she had a twisted right hind shoe, so I can forgive that defeat. He can bounce back from that and take this contest.
The Edinburgh Gin Handicap Hurdle is at 3.35 and Lastbutnotleast is also declared for this hurdle, however I think she will run in the Chase, whichever she goes in she should be respected. Donna’s Diamond is declared here, the grey has won twice at Haydock this year on heavy ground but is saddled with top weight and I don’t think this tight course will suit him. A horse who knows his way round here is Simon Waugh’s Total Assets with four career wins on this course. He has run well this year without winning but this could be his opportunity. Bulls Head is two from two this season but this is a big step up in class and he is out of the handicap. As an outsider I like Shelford from Dan Skelton’s yard, he has been there or thereabouts this year, his best effort when third to Donna’s Diamond, he is twenty pounds better off than that run and can make a show.
Finally at Kempton we have the BetFred Snowdrop Fillies Stakes at 3.15, a Listed race. Smart Call from Sir Michael Stoute’s yard is a pretty warm order for this. She is a South African import who carried all before her in her homeland with seven victories, however she did not win last season but was highly tried including a run at Sha-Tin against Highland Reel, Stoute will be looking to get her off the mark here. But I will oppose her to look for some value in the race, and the one I like the look of is Roger Varian’s Shenanigans, a dual winner last year at Goodwood and Newmarket beating some top class fillies. She was second last time out to Peach Melba but could have been over the top, she will come out fresh for this.
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