2.20pm Huntington Tips & Betting Preview 17/04/2017

A field of eight go to post for the forth race of the day at Huntingdon on Monday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Hint Of Grey won well on her latest start at Sedgefield and is respected on that run, but this can go to Dan Skelton’s HESTINA. The Skelton yard are flying at present and this four year old mare who was rated 86 on the flat has taken well to hurdling, winning her first race over timber in good style on her latest start at Ludlow. She jumped well and showed a good turn of foot to come clear in ready fashion under today’s rider Harry Skelton. She likely has much more to offer up 8lb and take another victory, with Want The Fairytale likely to be on the premises on handicap debut.

1 HINT OF GREY – Rated 81 on the flat and she’s been steadily improving over hurdles, winning her first race at Fakenham on her penultimate start, all out to fend off the challengers after a bad mistake at the last. She improved on that to beat Little Miss Poet in good style and remains on the same mark for today’s run, with scope for further progress and the ground firmly in his favour. She looks the likely main danger to the selection with Conor Shoemark taking the ride and she’s respected.

2 HESTINA – Rated 5lb better than Hint Of Grey on the flat and although she’s been head strong over obstacles for Dan Skelton, she turned in a good effort to win easily at Ludlow in April. She jumped well and despite being keen early on she, found a lot when shaken up by Harry Skelton to shoot clear after two out, seemingly with lots more to give. This better ground may well see her eek out more and with the form that Dan Skelton’s yard is in at present, that improvement should be forth coming. She;s been raised 8lb for that latest win, but can brush it off for another success.

3 ROYAL DEBUTANTE – Won on bumper debut for Paul Webber back in January 2016 when ridden out for a six length success in the 1m 6f contest in deep ground, though she is yet to take victory over timber for the yard. Her second run over hurdles was by far her best thus far, finishing second over further here in November, one pace towards the finish. She was far from disgraced when third here over the same C&D and this return to two miles is expected to suit, with the better ground also likely to see her show her best. She has a place chance under Richie McLernon but may just be vulnerable to progressive horses on this occasion.

4 FOOL TO TRY – Twice a winner on the flat for Roger Varian and she’s now a twice a winner over hurdles, taking her first on hurdling debut at Ludlow in October in a juvenile maiden. She took her second juvenile hurdle when staying on much the strongest to win at Fakenham two weeks later, though she was certainly below form when last seen in November at Sedgefield, well beaten in fifth place. Perhaps the good to soft was to blame on that occasion as she didn’t stay the trip on the ground, so she’d have to remain of interest now she’s on better ground for her second handicap start. She’s been lowered 3lb which seems quite generous and can challenge for a place for the inform Neil Mulholland yard.

5 ALIZEE JAVILEX – Now winless after six hurdling starts for Lucy Wadham, with her hurdling debut at Huntingdon remaining her best effort over timber so far. She’s been well beaten in two soft ground handicaps the last twice, but perhaps being on better ground may see her in better light this time around for Jack Sherwood. More is needed and she does look vulnerable again despite the handicapper dropping her 3lb, so perhaps is best watched again.

6 WANT THE FAIRYTALE – Winner of a 1m 4f handicap at Wolverhampton back in September on the flat and she’s not necessarily been disgraced in two hurdling starts thus far for Alan King. She was far too keen when third over further here in March, shaken up after a mistake three out from where she weakened out of things. Starts off in handicaps off 107 which is a workable mark and despite the ‘good’ ground being slight question mark, she is entitled to get involved and looks a lively place contender down in trip.

7 FLIGHT TO NOWHERE – Five year old who has shown little over hurdles for Richard Price, well beaten on all three oh her hurdling starts thus far and looks likely to struggle again. She showed more on her latest novice start at Chepstow when fifth, but she was still well beaten at huge odds and will need to improve massively on handicap debut to threaten the principles. Unlikely to be involved and best watched.

8 ROYAL PEARL – Winner of a claimer on the flat at Chelmsford back in October 2015 and she’s only shown ability in one run from four over hurdles for Tom Gretton, last seen well beaten at Doncaster in December when no match for Hestina who was in second. She remains on the same mark and it’s almost impossible to see her getting any closer to Hestina despite that rival up in the handicap. Best watched again.

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