Only five runners go to post for the feature race at Southwell today and it should be a tactical affair. Read on for our experts’ thoughts and betting tips.
IN SUMMARY: Late Night Lilly is interesting going for the hat-trick and isn’t discounted lightly. She should go close but has to shoulder 11st 10lb here and may just be vulnerable to an improver. BLUE COURT needs to be taken seriously on debut given she has some solid form in hurdles so far particularly on this ground and looks a sure-fire improver now switched to handicaps for her in-form yard. She can make her presence felt here and she could be tough to beat.
1 May Hay – Back-to-back winner here over C&D and at Stratford in June and has won here twice and on the AW. Performances since then have been getting steadily worse and not sure he will be able to show his best form off this weight today against some potentially smart opponents.
2 Late Night Lilly – Has had a good year so far with three wins so far, an easy win at Huntingdon (Good/Soft) in April and then back-to-back wins last two when picking up a couple of novice hurdles at Market Rasen (Good) over 2m and at Huntingdon (Good/Firm) again upped to 2m3f. Needs more now handicapping but on a good mark and with top yard to do it. Should go close.
3 One Big Love – Previously trained by Kieran Burke and showed some decent bumper form before finishing runner up in two small field novice events at Kempton (Good) and Newton Abbot (Good/Soft) last Spring. Off for 572 days and that is a long lay-off to overcome but with the right yard going forward and should come on for the run today. Best watched for now.
4 Midtech Valentine – Has won back-to-back races at Fontwell (Good) over 2m3f and Kempton (Soft) over 2m. Up 3lb and is an improving mare with a fine yard for these types. Engaged to run in the 3.35 at Cheltenham yesterday.
5 Blue Court – Has shown good progress so far in maiden and novice hurdles and appeals as the type to do better now entered into Handicaps. Debut run on heavy ground at Chepstow behind a hot favourite wasn’t a bad introduction. Yard have been among the winners recently and looks set for a big run over this trip with talented claimer taking off a useful 7lb. Interesting contender.