1.20pm Sandown tips for Sunday’s Class 3 race. Fascinating novices’ handicap chase, a field full of decent hurdlers who promise to do better in this discipline. It’s a race that looks worth watching again with plenty of future winners sure to come from it. Read on for our free betting tips, predictions and analysis.
IN SUMMARY: CRYSTAL LAD was notably carrying condition in the paddock at Plumpton on his return. He outran the way he looked there, tanking into the lead turning for home before the lack of fitness told. His trainer does well here and he looks well worth supporting at a big price. Qualando is well enough treated if he is on a going day, though those can be a little hard to predict, while Jameson could easily be enough ahead of the handicapper that the stiff track doesn’t prove the problem it might otherwise do for this free goer.
1 CHALONNIAL – Talented over hurdles but didn’t look entirely straightforward. Less than nine lengths behind Finian’s Oscar in the Tolworth at this track, a first time tongue strap may produce better. Another summer on his back may have helped him grow up, chance if so.
2 WESTERN MILLER – Wide margin winner on chasing debut, limitations exposed last time. Capable handicapper over hurdles but lacks the scope that a number of these do over fences from this mark.
3 QUALANDO – Tricky customer is without a win since the Fred Winter at the 2015 Cheltenham Festival. Runner-up the last thrice – including his chasing debut – he is well enough treated if on a going day, so merits plenty of each way consideration.
4 JAMESON – Solid over hurdles, he ran a smart second to West Approach on his chasing debut. A keen racer, he went without the hood he had worn for his previous yard, missing again now. Potentially well treated now in a handicap, the stiffer track is the slight concern for his stamina.
5 CASPER KING – Promising novice over hurdles but struggled once moved into handicaps. Bred to make a better chaser and any further rain will help his cause. Still has more than enough on his plate if he is to win this however.
6 CRYSTAL LAD – Best run over hurdles came at this track when fourth in the EBF Final on soft ground. He was carrying condition on his chasing debut but tanked through the contest, just tiring late. Yard have a great record here, looks a big each way player.
7 TOUCH KICK – Anything he did over hurdles was always going to be a bonus to connections, long thought of as a chaser. Has a little ground to make up with Crystal Lad on their running in the EBF Final but respected on his chasing debut.
8 BADEN – Inconsistent over hurdles, a pair of stand out efforts that would suggest this mark is lenient. Bitterly disappointing after a Wetherby win last season however so although it would be no surprise to see him go close, he is hard to recommend.
9 ACCORD – Impressive winner on his chasing debut at Fontwell. Got no peace up front last time and could be the same case here with Chalonnial in opposition. This is no easier a contest so needs a little more to get his head in front.
10 BALLY GILBERT – A few nibbles of form, including when runner-up to Mount Mews in a bumper. Bitterly disappointing the only time he tried a handicap, admittedly over further. That leaves him with enough to prove at present off an unchanged mark.
11 DEAUVILLE CRYSTAL – Much improved since entering handicaps in the spring, she hasn’t hit the same heights in a pair of chase starts. Softening conditions will suit her but she looks a little too high up the weights, especially in such a deep contest.