2.00pm Huntingdon Tips & Betting Preview 27/01/2017

Eight go to post over just short of two and a half miles in a handicap chase full of recent winners. Read on for our runner by runner preview and expert tip.

IN SUMMARY: Colin’s Brother has grown up over the summer, winning both of his starts this season with plenty to spare. The step back up to this will suit but his jumping looks fragile at times and with Sir Note likely to adopt his customary role bowling along at the head of affairs, any cracks in his jumping will show. In ICING ON THE CAKE, they may all have a very well handicapped rival to contend with. Out of the handicap when he won at Newbury, he is theoreticaly just two pounds higher here with the step up in trip sure to suit. He is a big barrel of a chaser and it will be disappointing to conenctions if he is not considerably better than this level sooner rather than later.

1 IN THE ROUGH – Looked a horse going places in 2014 when running up a sequence over hurdles but has found things tougher since sent chasing. His sole chasing win came in October at Uttoxeter, beating a horse who is better going right handed. It’s easy to excuse his most recent run when heavy ground didn’t suit but the pick of his runs both over hurdles and fences have been at further. His best performance this season was over 3m2f at Carlisle so a step back almost a mile at a sharper track is not a positive looking move.

2 TJONGEJONGE – Broke his duck here in the UK in some style at Market Rasen back in November but flopped badly on his only start since. He jumped to the right at Newbury so a return this way round is a positive with the way he travelled at Market Rasen suggesting the shorter trip shouldn’t be a problem. The yard were badly out of form when last seen but have notched a pair of winners, seconds and thirds from their last ten runners so that would not be an excuse this time.

3 COLIN’S BROTHER – Another summer on his back combined with a step down in trip has seen a 2/2 start to the season. It was a weak four runner contest on paper that he won at Bangor but he stepped forward again to capture a 0-145 at Ludlow last time out. He briefly looked in trouble as the pace quickened turning for home but he was well on top at the finish. A step back up to this trip shouldn’t be a problem on this similarly sharp track despite a career high mark to contend with.

4 SIR NOTE – Another who has a career high mark to defy if he is to keep his run of rude health going. A massive 49lbs above where his winning run began, but he jumps beautifully which enables him to put pressure on others. He has won on soft ground in the past though trainer James Eustace was quick to state after his Leicester win that “good ground is key to him” so he wouldn’t want anymore rain. The trip is the main concern, untried over it since looking a non stayer at Worcester in May 2015.

5 RHAPANDO – Both career wins have come going right handed on good and good to soft ground so conditions look suitable for Paul Webber’s charge. Missed the whole of last season with heat in a tendon, he was brought down less than a fortnight ago at Kempton on his return. Well thought of at home “if he remains sound he should be able to rise a long way from his old rating” but it remains to be seen if the incident at Kempton has affected his confidence.

6 ICING ON THE CAKE – Really took the eye in the parade ring at Fontwell on his seasonal debut, he tanked through the contest, leaving himself empty on the run for home. A proper chaser in the making, he sprung a bit of a shock at Newbury on his chasing debut under rules when lowering the colours of the Dan Skelton trained Knockgraffon. A rise to 127 looks lenient on the back of that win and this bull of a horse could take some stopping in his follow up bid.

7 GORES ISLAND – A grand servant for the Gary Moore team through the years but has been winless since January 2015. Despite that he is only three pounds lower having run up a sequence of placed efforts this season. William Clarke retains the ride having nearly broken the losing streak on the horse at Sandown last time. This easier track at the trip might suit better and despite being fully exposed, he shouldn’t be entirely dismissed.

8 ZANSTRA – Placed in two of his four starts over the bigger obstacles, he has shown promise if not looked entirely comfortable with the fences. He broke his duck over hurdles in January of last year over this C&D but has paid for his consistency since, running off a career high mark now. The sole runner on the card for the Colin Tizzard yard who are 2/6 with chasers in the last five years at the track, he is deserving of respect.

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