2.25pm Doncaster Tips & Betting Preview 08/01/2016

2.25pm Doncaster Friday 8th January

Free Tip: Mercers Court at 25/1 Each Way

Race Details

Race Time: 2.25pm MeetingDoncaster Day: Friday 8th January 2015 Full Race Name: Trueman Family Novices’ Handicap Chase 

Race Preview:

These contests are always intriguing as we look to try to work out who is ahead or behind the handicapper, and who is improving faster than their weights suggest. Heavy ground today makes life all the more interesting as does the three-mile trip, with a heavy accent on the stamina required.

1) Mysteree (5/1) – Rated 125 when last seen over hurdles, the eight year old finished well beaten that day back in March 2104, but that seemed to let him get in off of 117 for his chasing debut a full twenty months later. He hacked up over two and a half miles or so at Wetherby but caution is advised as although he jumped admirably, that was a two horse race run at a snails pace (close to a minute slower than standard), and he could possibly bounce on his second run back.

2) The Ramblin Kid (6/1) – On the bright side the son of Westerner has a win on heavy ground to his name, and trainer Micky Hammond is in good enough form, but on the down side, he has had three runs over fences and never really looked like winning. A last of seven at Carlisle was followed by a much better fourth of nine at Newcastle but he then fell last time out at the same track (going well but too soon to call), and it will be interesting to see how that affects him this afternoon.

3) Mercers Court (25/1) – An interesting contender making his chasing debut after fifteen runs over hurdles and two successes, both on good ground and at distances up to two miles five furlongs. He won a Point to Point in Ireland over 3 miles on Soft ground with the front two pulling well clear and while he’s not run on Soft often he does have form from a Plumpton National Hunt Flat race and if taking to chasing would be well handicapped on old form.

4) Leanna Ban (11/1) – Beauty is as beauty does as they say and the fact that this nine year old son of Alfora has won two chases, one over this sort of trip, has to count in his favour. He does have to race off a sixteen pound higher mark today but had a pipe opener over hurdles at Wetherby when third in December to put him straight, and with a win on yielding ground in an Irish point to point in his favour he ought to put up a bold showing here.

5) Lovely Job (7/4) – If this six year old stays the trip (which is an unknown) then he may be well handicapped as he gets in here off the same mark as when a thirteen length runner up to Bekkensfirth at Leicester on his chasing bow. That was over two and a half miles, and his first run in eight months, but he weakened quickly that day and this trip on heavy ground could well find him out.  That said, he is lightly raced so should improve, but we would like to see a bit more evidence to back that up first, especially at his short price.

6) Manballandall (28/1) – We like the name but aren’t so sure about the form! Two starts over fences have seen him beaten seventy-five lengths and twenty-three lengths at Kelso over this distance and then over two and a half miles on heavy going at Newcastle. He has won over this distance and on the same ground over hurdles which may help, but needs to show he can do it again over fences and although he has been dropped a very generous seven pounds for his last outing, that still may not be enough.

7) Pure Poteen (11/2) – Very good or very bad seems a good way to sum up this eight year old who was a good second on his chasing debut over an inadequate two and a half miles, but then pulled up at Taunton, fell at Southwell, and pulled up again at the same venue. Put away over the summer he was a different horse on his return when winning at Chepstow and ran another good race after being put up six pounds when second at Warwick. The winner that day has gone in again twice since so the form looks solid, and with the Neil Mulholland yard in decent form he looks to have a good chance today off a two pound higher mark.

8) Askamore Darsi (11/1) – Eight races over fences give the son of Darsi the edge on experience and he has finished in the first three in five of them, including an eighty seven length win on heavy going over this three miles at Market Rasen. He ten stayed on in to second at Newcastle behind Alto Des Mottes (received two pounds), but may be in the grip of the handicapper today off his current rating but looks likely to be in the mix for a place at least even if trainer Donald McCain is struggling for winners

9) Joseph Mercer (22/1) – Gets lumps of weight all round but may have been flattered when finishing second in a six horse race when well beaten b y the favourite when the third failed to jump a fence properly and the others all failed to finish. Despite his low weight he looks badly treated off of 98 (we would think nearer to 90), but in this going he may be able to make his low weight tell and run in to a place – but only maybe.


Lovely Job may well improve as expected but is a poor bet at the price. Pure Poteen looks the safe angle at 6/1 Each Way for the in form Neil Mulholland stable – although the going is a concern, his form is working out well. However, for us the value bet is Mercers Court. An Irish Point to Point winner, he could prove well handicapped on his old hurdles form if jumping well.

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