Some top racing to look forward to on Saturday and BetBright Ambassador, Nick Luck, is here with his tips for Wincanton and Doncaster…
Wincanton 1.50 – Litterale Ci
This is a warm little handicap for mares, but there’s a case to be made that top weight Litterale Ci has more in hand of the handicapper than most, looking value for far more than the winning margin when quickening up smartly to win a decent race at Newton Abbot. The handicapper might have been harsher, and she looks to be swimming in calm enough waters here against her own sex.
She gets on extremely well with good amateur Aine O’Connor and can concede the weight all round.
Wincanton 2.25 – Bags Groove
I’m not sure Bags Groove ever quite lived up to his trainer’s expectations over hurdles, but had useful form nonetheless. He looked much more like it over fences at Ffos Las last time, however, and can build on that here. It’s also worth noting that he jumped to his right on occasions and should be comfortable going this way round. Secret Investor should be a formidable rival, but Paul Nicholls may have placed him cleverly to win a slightly below par running of the Persian war last time and he may lack the star potential of the selection.
Wincanton – 3.00 – Verdana Blue
This is a very nice running of the Elite and Verdana Blue is a confident selection. She is all about speed and this sharp track at two miles should suit ideally. There may be very few opportunities for her after this until the spring and we know she is in very good fettle after her bloodless victory in a weaker race at Kempton on her seasonal debut. Clearly the faces two very useful 4 year olds in Redicean and We Have A Dream, but they are now into open company for the first time and have to concede a punchy six pounds to the selection.
Wincanton 3.35 – Present Man
It’s about a year to the day that Bryonymania really took hold after Present man had won this race off just a 2lb lower mark. For all he only scrambled home that day, my contention is that was a stronger running of the race, and he performed well enough late season in the bet365 Gold Cup to make me think he’s no busted flush off this mark. We know trip, ground track and jockey are ideal; we know his run style suits these big field handicaps; we know he has the requisite class. My only issue is that we don’t know how well handicapped is his stablemate El Bandit. If the answer is ‘very’, that could be a problem… otherwise, Present Man can repeat last year’s heroics.
Doncaster 1.30 – Maid to Remember
This is a pretty talented filly who has been chopping and changing ground/trip all season in search of winning black type. The going was too quick at Newmarket, but she ran a blinder and may just be hitting form – this mile and a quarter with plenty of give looks ideal and she hasn’t had a more suitable opportunity all year.
Doncaster 2.05 – Donjuan Triumphant
It is hard not to like this horse, who seems to really come into his own at this time of year. Indeed, I fancied him to run a huge race in the Haydock Sprint Cup and, infuriatingly for this column, he just finished out of the money. It was still a hell of a run and he did equally well when a fine third in the Champions Sprint at Ascot. This is an easier race by some way, though on no less suitable conditions, and he looks a biggish price overnight even though he heads the market.
Doncaster 3.15 – My Lord and Master
My Lord and Master was thought of as a potential Classic hopeful at the beginning of the season and, for all those aspirations were not realised, he may yet make a pretty smart horse on softish ground. I am not deterred by the handicapper putting him up 4lbs in defeat after his run at York – he came from a long way back and only narrowly failed to overhaul a super-tough horse in the form of his life trained by Mark Johnston. His running style should suit Danny Tudhope perfectly, and he makes plenty of appeal as one of very few unexposed horses in here.
Odds are provided at time of writing, please check your betslip to confirm they have not changed before betting.