2.30pm Wetherby Tips & Betting Preview 31/10/2015

Race Time2.30pm MeetingWetherby Day: Saturday 31st October
Distance: 2m Full Race Nameolbg.com Mares’ Hurdle (Listed)

One of those horrible conundrums here with Nicky Henderson responsible for Ma Filleule the best horse in the race by some margin – but returning to hurdles after her last nine races all over fences and at the highest level. Nevertheless, we feel she offers the best value in this race and so is our tip. Last time out she was sixth to Silviniaco Conti at Aintree and there isn’t anything of that calibre in this field, but is she fit this afternoon or having a pipe opener for other targets? Luckily for us, Nicky is one of those trainers quite happy to switch the right horses form hurdles to fences and back when it suits, and we expect that’s the idea this afternoon with a number of others in the field also using this as their reappearances.

Interestingly, Nicky will also know where he stands with Blue Buttons thanks to her exploits behind Polly Peachum last season, but that hasn’t stopped Harry Fry looking for victory with his seven year old daughter of King’s Theatre. An ultra consistent mare, she has finished in the first four in six of her last seven races, with a victory at Wincanton as well, and she won’t go under without a fight. The yard are in good form as usual to start the season, with wins and places scattered around the country. Noel Fehily is as good as it gets in the saddle these days, making for a top level combination that seem sure to run well this afternoon and get among the prize money, but for win purposes she’s too short given she has to give our tip 9lb compared to a handicap and probably doesn’t want this short a trip.

We had our eye on a number of horses which haven’t made the cut which would have made it a much tougher race for our tip – Western Breeze, Tara Mist & Stephanie Frances to name but 3 – so we’ll cast our eyes over the two behind the top two in the market. Intense Tango was seen four times over summer running on the flat, and running well – her mark increased from 78 to 87 despite not quite managing to get her head in front. She seemed to lack a turn of foot over trips of 12f and 13f, and it remains to be seen if she too may want furtehr than 2m. She ran well in the Aintree Juvenile Hurdle in April when last seen over obstacles but not well enough to win this and she has been dropped from 140 to 135 with her last two runs. She also has to carry 6lb more than the two ahead of her in the market and even with the fitness edge 9/2 is a price we aren’t willing to take.

Finally Bantam, who Henry Dale has kept going over the summer with only a short break. Sent off at very short prices for four of her last five runs, she managed to win only two of those, being beaten at odds of 4/9 (by 22 lengths no less) and 10/11, before finishing 2nd off 130 in her last race at Stratford. She really shouldn’t be good enough to win this race and we’ll be disappointed if she does.

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