Renowned Horse Racing Tipster and Journalist Ed Quigley, aka ‘Longshot Ted’ offers up his best bets for Saturday”s TV action, and picks out some of the other horses who have made him sit up and take note, on what should be a cracking weekend of sport.
- Atlanta Brave, Newbury 1.30, e/w – BetVictor
- Espoir De Guye, Newbury 2.05, win – BetUK
- Pym, Kelso 2.25, e/w – BetUK
- Bollingerandkrug, Kelso 4.45, win – BetVictor
- Elegant Escape, Newbury 5.00, e/w – William Hill
Aintree Grand National (April 15) advice:
The opener at Newbury looks a competitive Handicap Hurdle, and the Kerry Lee trained ATLANTA BRAVE looks to have each-way claims (1.30). A winner of two out of his three hurdle starts, and arriving here on a hattrick, the 5-year-old showed a really good attitude for such an inexperienced type to fend off all challengers at Hereford last time out.
It looked as though he was just starting to tire over that extended 2m5f trip, so the drop back in distance shouldn’t be a concern. Soft ground suits, so the more rain the merrier for this individual who has to be respected on Handicap debut. Richard Patrick takes the ride.
ESPOIR DE GUYE is starting to look well treated off a BHA Rating of 140 over fences, and gets the nod on his second start for Paul Nicholls in the Class 2 Handicap Chase (2.05). Formerly with Venetia Williams, he was rated 150 at his peak, and there were plenty of signs on his stable debut over C&D last month to suggest he could be ready to cash in.
It is entirely plausible he needed the run on his first start for the Ditcheat maestro when finishing fifth behind The Big Bite last time out, which was also his first start after a wind-operation. He travelled well for a long way before fading in the closing stages, so with an improvement fitness-wise, and an 8lb pull at the weights with The Big Bite, he ought to be right in the mix for the red hot Paul Nicholls yard. It is also worth pointing out that all his best performances have come on Soft ground, so with underfoot conditions likely to be riding much more testing than in the last encounter, it can only aid his cause.
The concluding race on the Newbury card is a wide-open Veteran’s Chase, and I would give a small each-way chance to the 11-year-old ELEGANT ESCAPE on what possibly could be his last hurrah. He really hasn’t sparked this season for Joe Tizzard, but has plummeted down the weights, and runs off 130 in this event over the extended 2m7f. Now 10lb lower than when last successful, he won on his only start over C&D, and loves Soft ground.
For a horse with so much back-class, it wouldn’t be the biggest shock in the world if he were to bounce back in this company, and he can go well at a price.
Heading over to Kelso, and I thought the most interesting horse on the card was the 10-year-old PYM, who makes his first start for the Nigel Twiston-Davies team (2.25). Previously with Oliver Greenall, and before that with Nicky Henderson, he is a horse with a lot of back-class, so it will be fascinating if new connections can spark up some of his old interest.
Back over Hurdles off a mark of 127, he isn’t a forlorn hope off this type of rating, considering he was a Listed winner over fences, and placed at Cheltenham over Hurdles in a Grade 2 once upon a time. The tongue-tie is added for the first time, and Finn Lambert takes the ride claiming 5lb. It wouldn’t be the biggest surprise in the world were he to bounce back off a 538 day lay-off for a yard that can easily ready them after a long time off the track.
I was impressed by the manner in which BOLLINGERANDKRUG attacked his fences when winning over C&D last time out, and has every opportunity to follow up here despite a 8lb hike in the weights. The 8-year-old made all to land the spoils three weeks ago, and in this small field scenario, I don’t see any need for a change of tactics which served him so well last time out.
The Lucinda Russell team are in scintillating form at the moment operating at around a 30% strike-rate for March, and of course managed to land more Cheltenham Festival honours with Corach Rambler getting the business done for the second time at Prestbury Park.
The Grand National will be arriving at Aintree in just three weeks’ time, and the excitement is starting to build to arguably the world’s most famous race. Obviously there will be a few twists and turns along the way, but from an Ante Post Perspective, the Gordon Elliott trained GALVIN makes plenty of each-way appeal at 20/1 to land the showpiece event in Liverpool.
He ran an excellent race in the Cross Country at the Cheltenham Festival, when runner-up to stable mate and last year’s Grand National third Delta Work. If we get some proper spring weather and decent ground for Aintree I can see him running a massive race and his odds could easily tumble.
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Don’t forget Ed will be back on Monday with his Weekend Review, discussing all the key talking points and fall-out from the major races.
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