IN SUMMARY: Discoverie seemed to have quite a bit in hand when scoring over C&D just under three weeks ago and is evidently in rude health, but he faces tougher opposition today and a couple of these will be better suited by the fast ground. Teenage Dream comes here after running quite well on Fibresand a fortnight ago and the booking of Richard Johnson catches this eye but this can go to GIN COBBLER (10/1 Each Way), who is out of the weights but won off a higher mark last year, is suited by this track and can be a tough horse to pass when in a good jumping rhythm on a sound surface. Roxyfet has just finished a very productive season and loves it here, but he’s on a tough mark now and probably wants slower ground.
1 Chestnut Ben – Seems very versatile ground-wise and has won twice at over 2m at Musselburgh this year, more recently off a mark only 4lb lower than today’s; however, has gone off the boil in recent weeks and, although dropped in class today, needs to up his game.
2 Discay – Won his first chase at the third attempt, when allowed to dominate a small-field event at Market Rasen (2m1f, soft) from the front this month; remains very well handicapped on best hurdle form but was a bitterly disappointing favourite in that sphere last week and his tendency to clout the occasional fence also reduces his appeal.
3 Roxyfet – Did well last season, with three of his five wins coming over C&D and another in a 2m1f hurdle here; enters calculations on that evidence but might find today’s ground a bit too lively and last couple of runs, though perfectly respectable, suggest he’s on a tough mark now.
4 Teenage Dream – Has raced only twice over jumps since 2014 and never really threatened when fifth over 2m3f here on the more recent occasion in September, but ran quite well on Fibresand a couple of weeks ago and will be suited by today’s fast ground; cheekpieces refitted; one to consider.
5 Stilo Blue Native – Still a maiden under rules but improved greatly upon disappointing chase debut when second at Newcastle (2m, heavy) last month, despite lacking fluency; open to further progress over fences but unseated rider here on latest outing and needs to prove he’s effective on fast ground.
6 Formidableopponent – Unplaced all nine starts since joining current stable in the autumn; gave decent account when fourth to Chestnut Ben at Musselburgh (2m, good to soft) in January but was soon back in the doldrums and comes here with too many risks attached.
7 Discoverie – Two wins on soft ground this year, the more recent in good style over C&D 19 days ago; evidently in very good nick and subsequent 6lb rise doesn’t look excessive, but he’s taking on much stronger opposition today and the faster ground is probably not ideal.
8 Gin Cobbler – Has a patchy record since his two wins at Hexham in May/June last year but most of his runs during the winter were on ground much softer than he prefers and he travelled well to a point when third at Kelso (2m1f, good to soft) this month; remains well handicapped (even from 4lb out of the weights), likes this track and, with underfoot conditions very much in his favour today, can make a bold bid.
myracing Forecast Prices: 100/30 Discoverie, 7/2 Discay, 5/1 Roxyfet, Teenage Dream, 7/1 Gin Cobbler, 8/1 Stilo Blue Native, 10/1 Chestnut Ben, 20/1 Formidableopponent