A few decent types line up in this Handicap Hurdle where they should go a good clip on the forecast ground. Read on for our experts’ thoughts and betting tips.
IN SUMMARY: Catchthemoonlight won in impressive style earlier this month and despite unseating her rider next time out should make a bold bid to get back into the winner’s enclosure. Pretty Miss Mahler did well to finish second that day and may get closer now with that run behind her. They may have to play second fiddle however to LEE SIDE LADY who looked progressive earlier in the year with two wins, and can take this if improving on her 2nd at Fakenham last month with her yard continuing in fine form.
1 Fit The Brief – Has had a fairly low-key start to life so far over Hurdles and managed only a runner-up effort 4 starts back at Southwell. 5th of 6 in Handicap Hurdle at Towcester last month and looks to have picked up where he left on in the Spring. Wears a tongue strap today and hopes will be high they can make a difference with the yard going so well but hard to fancy with such a poor strike-rate.
2 Midnight Gem – Produced a career-best when striking at Huntingdon 19 days ago, staying on well to win by 4 lengths. Quickly turned out for this and entitled to go well but that was a hard race and on quicker ground than she encounters here so may struggle to follow up.
3 Lee Side Lady – Progressive last season when scoring nicely by 5 lengths at Fontwell in February before following up at Fakenham in May. Fine 2nd on re-appearance run last month despite being a fair way off the winner and should come on for that. Big player here if maintaining his progress and could be a nice type for the yard.
4 Kassis – Couple of wins last year and finished this season with a decent 1 ¼ length win in a Handicap Chase at Huntingdon in May. Good enough return over Fences at Hereford last month despite finishing last of 4 and needs to translate best form over Fences to Hurdles today and may find one or two too good despite lenient mark.
5 Flower Power – Been running on the flat this Autumn and scored at Ripon on her second attempt, winning by 6 lengths. Last run was abysmal finishing last of 11 at York but on a lenient mark but hard to fancy in this line-up.
6 Bourdello – Been off the track for 6 months and really has something to prove given form last year was nothing to shout about. Can easily be overlooked here.
7 Pretty Miss Mahler – Unexposed Hurdler who was 2nd on her last start at Hexham, finishing 9 lengths behind the re-opposing Catchthemoonlight from the Lucinda Russell yard. Big chance of going close if improving on that.
8 Chasma – Won nicely at Uttoxeter last November and followed up with a win at Sedgefield in February, staying on nicely to win by 2 ½ lengths. Good form ended on her last run at Uttoxeter in May and needs a big effort to get involved here.
9 Catchthemoonlight – Won for the first time at Hexham earlier this month when readily drawing clear to win by 9 lengths. Unseated her rider at Uttoxeter 8 days later. 8lb up for her earlier win and talented conditional takes off a useful 7lb. Should give it a good shot at getting back to winning ways.