3.20pm Taunton Tips & Betting Preview 20/12/2016

This should be run at a good clip with fourteen going to post for this Class 5 handicap chase. Read on for our expert’s thoughts and betting tips.

IN SUMMARY: Edieff’s Lad can go well of his current mark if his stamina hold out and he has solid claims along with Walter Wagtail despite his hike in the weights after his Plumpton win. The should both go well but at a further down the field BALLY LAGAN might be able to land a blow from his basement mark of 77. He has been largely consistent all year and deserves to win a race of this nature with some of his appliances removed today. Bus Named Desire can run into the money if one of the others under perform.

1 Walter Wagtail – Came back from fourteen months off only to produce a couple of fair efforts in better races up to 2m7f. Has improved in three runs recently, upped in trip to 3m1f on latest start at Plumpton (Good) to win a similar race last month. Doesn’t look the easiest to train but down in trip here and should run his race again from a 6lb higher mark and with cheek pieces applied again.

2 Sonoftheking – Won a minor hunter chase at Exeter by 4 ½ lengths at Exeter in May after competing in points for the last two years and pulled up on last start at Fontwell. Has a lot to prove after 222 days off and best watched for now.

3 Fuhgeddaboutit – Pulled up or fell on his first three starts this year over hurdles and ran a fine second when 33/1 at Newton Abbot in May. Made his chase debut at Bangor (Soft) last month in a novices race and fell four out when a player in the race. Needs to bounce back here and hard to fancy give his completion rate in 2016.

4 How’s My Friend – Off the track since 2014 and only competed in points in between, before which he was running consistently up to 3m4f. Sole career win in chases came at Towcester (Good/Firm) over 2m3f. This might stretch him today after such an absence but on a good mark of 95 for this and one to note in the market.

5 Bus Named Desire – Won a similar handicap chase over C&D last November (Good/Soft) and ran well a month later when runner up in a better race at Uttoxeter (Heavy). Pulled up on final start eleven months ago when breaking a blood vessel and needs to up his game on return. Capable though judged on earlier form and market vibes would be positive with the yard amongst the winners recently.

6 Triggywinkle – Ran a career best to land a Class 4 chase at Wincanton (Good/Soft) last month over 1m7f but has disappointed behind some progressive horses in two runs since up to 2m2f. Has it all to prove at this trip and easy to rule out today.

7 Ballyegan – Two time C&D winner whose last win over fences came this time last year at Towcester (Heavy) over shorter. Hasn’t improved up to 2m4f since then but well treated on old form and made a promising reappearance at Hereford last month on his second run after a break. Only mid-division there yesterday and hard to fancy if he takes his place here upped in trip.

8 Bally Lagan – Largely consistent since May without winning and ran a good race to finish 5 lengths behind in fourth over 1m7f at Hexham (Good). Has won up to 2m4f and removal of his usual tongue strap could help here (has run well without it before). Connections also reach for cheekpieces and he could be dangerous to ignore from a mark of 77 in a race that won’t take much winning.

9 Joe The Rogue – Won a more competitive handicap chase at Fontwell (Soft) three years ago over 3m2f when trained by David Phelan. Has struggled in this grade in three starts for the yard so far and hard to see him getting involved in this given he how far he was beaten over this trip last month over C&D.

10 Edeiff’s Lad – Won at this track earlier in the Spring over 2m and back to form after two starts this Autumn when 2 ½ lengths in second behind a useful winner at Wincanton (Good/Soft) seven days ago (Triggywinkle in fifth). Has to prove it up to this trip as he was well beaten on his last try over C&D last year. Remains on the same mark and each-way claims.

11 Carobello – Down to a handy mark of 74 and he has finished in the money on his last two starts including when third of 9 over C&D twenty-six days ago. Needs more to take this given he hasn’t won since 2014 and one to watch unless the money comes for him.

12 Comical Red – Has won over hurdles here over 3m (Heavy) and has only completed two of his seven starts over fences. Well beaten when third at Exeter (Good) last month over 2m3f. Has hurdles form over further and 4lb out of the handicap. Others look stronger today.

13 Uncle Petit – Won a decent handicap chase over today’s trip at Worcester (Good) two years ago and off the track for over two years until returning this term. Pulled up in two starts up to 3m and has a lot to prove despite being 7lb out of the handicap.

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