3.20pm Towcester Tips & Betting Preview 04/05/2017

A field of eleven go to post for the third race of the day at Towcester on Thursday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Champion Chase and Sulamani The Late should both figure if taking another step forward but preference is for Graeme McPherson’s LONDONIA. The five year old who certainly can be headstrong but he still tends to find lots of the bridle, as his summer win at Ffos Las proved as he powered clear despite an awkward head carriage. He finished off last season with a good third over C&D and if fully wound up on seasonal debut with conditions to suit and Johnson taking the ride, he should be going close in this.

1 CHAMPION CHASE – Is starting to be quite frustrating for Kim Bailey and looked to be very one paced on both his runs so far in handicaps, travelling well at Southwell two weeks ago before finding nothing off the bridle and weakening on the run in. On that basis, the step back in trip should suit and a two pound drop in the weights will help, but he’s hard to trust and he’s likely to find at least one too speedy in this for Kim Bailey off top weight.

2 MOSCOW ME – Ten year old who certainly hadn’t been at his best for Henry Oliver before springing back to life on his latest start when third over C&D last month, finishing a clear third and beaten around five lengths. The new headgear clearly worked and there has to be optimism for better with Robert Hawker taking off a useful 7lb this time around. Conditions are to suit and he certainly has place clams if improving again.

3 SULAMANI THE LATE – Clearly not a straight forward sort but he’s been placed on both his handicap runs so far, finishing second at Sedgefield to a well handicapped sort on handicap debut before coming home in third when down in trip, only beaten around two lengths in the end. He clearly benefited from that drop back in trip and has to be considered a danger off the same mark with how well the Skeltons are going of late, operating at an 18% strike rate from their last 38 runners. Conditions are to suit and a big run looks on the cards.

4 OSGOOD – First of the Gary Moore runners who won easily off this mark at Plumpton in September on fast ground but he’s not one to rely on heavily and has been well beaten the last twice, the latest of which over hurdles. He showed little in that race, always in the rear and tailed off from an early stage, so is almost impossible to fancy under the same 10lb again today as he’s clearly not one to rely on.

5 CENTREOFEXCELLENCE – Won a handicap at Wincaton in April 2016 but she was likely booked for third before the leader stumbled and unseated the rider at the last, hampering the eventual second. He was last seen a week later trying to follow up when well beaten at Fontwell upped in trip and has something to prove on the back of 370 day absence in this. Likely best watched as he’s entitled to need the run and he’d probably prefer it softer.

6 SHRUBLAND – Rated 54 on the flat and although he showed some promise in novice races, he’s been well beaten on his first two handicap hurdles and has a lot to prove in this for Alexandra Dunn. He lost his pitch worryingly early at Sandown when last seen over hurdles and found nothing when asked for an effort, which is very off putting and perhaps softer ground would be preferable for him. Possible each way claims if back to his novice form but others have far less to prove.

7 LONDONIA – Headstrong horse who won in quite remarkable style when winning at Ffos Las in June, pulling the entire way before bursting clear at today’s trip and he’s still only 4lb above that mark. He ran well over C&D when last seen in November when third and the fact Johnson retakes the ride makes him interesting for a yard who are going well at present. Ground conditions suit and a big run is on the cards for this five year old who still remains with potential for more this season.

8 ORION’S MIGHT – The fact he has no wins from thirty starts over hurdles is already a statistic that puts you off immediately, with him being 0-49 overall with his flat runs taking into account. On his latest start at Ludlow he looked far from keen to go through with his efforts and it looks very unlikely he’ll be making it 50th time lucky despite being given a 3lb lift from the handicapper.

9 MOUNT VESUVIUS – Back over hurdles for the first time in four months when storming to a seven length victory at Exeter over further and will be carrying a seven pound penalty as a result. The drop back in trip is of concern but he has run well at this distance and if they go a good pace he should be brought into the race nicely, though that isn’t guaranteed. Likely to be involved if in the same form again but can be taken on as he bids to follow up.

10 UJAGAR – Lightly raced over hurdles and won a selling handicap on his penultimate start at Taunton, only needing to be pushed out for a comfortable success. Raised 6lb for his new yard he could only manage fifth when looking one paced late on so does have something to prove off the same mark on second start for Kevin Bishop. Another step forward is required on his preferred ground and others do make more appeal on balance.

11 PERFECT TIMING – 3lb out of the weights for Andrew Martin and has been unplaced on all ten of her hurdling starts to date, which doesn’t make her a stand out choice for this. She was last seen at Stratford where she could only finish fifth, hanging left handed when asked for an effort and weakening out of things tamely. Yet again she’s impossible to recommend.

Please Gamble Responsibly