2.20pm Towcester Tips & Betting Preview 13/04/2017

A rather lacklustre card at Towcester today but at least it’s some racing and this is the most exciting race of the day as at the moment a field of eight go to post, the largest field of the day. Good to firm ground makes a nice change and a pot of £4,549 is up for grabs for this handicap. Read on for our expert analysis, runner by runner guide and free tip for the contest.

IN SUMMARY: A very interesting handicap and several in with chances on this quicker ground. Tell The Tale has run much worse than his form figures would suggest in recent starts and is priced on connections and jockey rather than what he has achieved so looks worth taking on. Benbecula is 18 pounds below his last winning mark if you take Alice Mills’ 5 pound claim into account but will have to win on the bridle because he finds very little under pressure. Lambeau Field is still relatively unexposed for Charlie Longsdon and interestingly finished 3rd behind Defi Du Seuil at Cheltenham which is the best piece of form in the book here but our vote goes to the top weight HONEY POUND (5/1). Tim Vaughan’s charge will relish the fast ground today, is off a reasonable mark and is the best horse in the race on official figures.

1 HONEY POUND – Boasts a 100% record on good to firm ground (1/1) and will be the one horse in the field that will truly relish the quicker going here today. Although he is the top weight, he was second off this mark at Leicester on unsuitable ground in January and was third off a 12 pound higher mark last season so looks reasonably well treated in the grand scheme of things. Tim Vaughan is operating at a 21% strike-rate this season which is very impressive.

2 TELL THE TALE – Trainer Neil Mulholland is operating at a 20% strike-rate over the past two weeks and has a strike-rate of 30% this season so he’s having a very fruitful time of it. Although to the naked eye the form figures of this horse look solid, he was beat 20 lengths in a two runner race at Wincanton last time out, albeit behind a very good horse in Capitaine. He is respected but looks too short to be backing on this occasion.

3 BENBECULA – Very interesting runner for Richard Mitchell and another who will appreciate the faster conditions today. The Motivator gelding won at Fontwell off a mark of 115 this time last year and is now 13 pounds lower in the weights so if he gets back to anywhere near his best, he is absolutely chucked in at the weights. Keep an eye on the market for this one, if the money comes for him it could be very interesting as Alice Mills takes off a further 5 pounds.

4 MISS BENEFITZ – Formerly trained by the O’Sullivan yard in Ireland, this mare has failed to set the world alight in the UK for Mike Hammond, well beat on each of her last five starts. The majority of those runs came on soft or heavy ground and she had some solid placed form on good ground in Ireland so it will be interesting to see if the quick ground can bring out some improvement here today.

5 SWEEPING ROCK – Jamie Moore gets the leg back up on this gelding who had a few spins on the flat recently so he certainly won’t lack fitness anyways which is one positive. However, all of his best form has come on the flat and he is winless over jumps from his seven starts and it could be a case that connections are just looking to get a run into him before he goes back and tries to win on the flat again.

6 LAMBEAU FIELD – Interesting ex-Irish trained flat runner, formerly in the hands of Charles O’Brien. His best finish on the flat was a second place finish in a Tipperary maiden over a mile and a half but he has one very interesting piece of form in the book. That came at Cheltenham in the Grade 2 Triumph Hurdle Trial where he finished 3rd behind Defi Du Seuil. He was a long way behind the winner but he went on the win the Triumph Hurdle very comfortably so that form has to be taken seriously for the Longsdon runner.

7 IRISH HAWKE – Donald McCain trained runner who has multiple entries over the next few days so clearly the yard are very keen to get a run into him which is interesting. He was pulled up at Southwell in December when last seen but is now just 2 pounds above his last winning mark, that victory coming at Bangor-On-Dee last August. Yard know the time of day with their runners and any market move would be significant.

8 MOSCOW ME – Sole course winner in the field and that came over this trip in November 2015, albeit it was over the larger obstacles. He is a two time winner over hurdles though but was bitterly disappointing when well down the field at Taunton recently. Interestingly, cheekpieces go on for the very first time and they can spark major improvement in a horse but they will have to.

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