7.30pm Fontwell Tips & Betting Preview 18/08/2016

Our race preview takes a look at a tricky handicap hurdle in the evening at Fontwell, see our betting tips below to uncover an ever consistent sort who can take the beating in this race.

IN SUMMARY: Royal Battalion was soundly beaten on his last two starts on both the flat and over hurdles, but is a course winner and would be dangerous to discount. Filbert hasn’t raced over hurdles since 2012 but has been a decent chaser in the mean time and has the champion jockey aboard, however he was pulled up on his first start for this stable. So perhaps it’ll pay to go for the ever consistent BREAKING BITS, who always seems to give his all and rarely has a bad day. On his latest run he seemed to stay the new trip well and the ground will suit, and on that evidence he could be rewarded with another win.

1 FILBERT – Went off the boil on his last 2 chasing starts after a good run over fences 3 runs ago at Kempton in May (24f, Good). Very hard to gauge whether this mark over hurdles is appropriate as he hasn’t raced over these obstacles since December 2012. Even with the champion jockey aboard, it can only be a watching brief for today.

2 FIRST AVENUE – Okay effort over hurdles on penultimate start when 4th of 9 at this track in June (20f, Good). Tailed off since on the flat though, and will probably need more off of this mark to feature prominently, which is shown by Morgan employing Harry Teal, a 7lb claimer for the ride.

3 ROYAL BATTALION – 2 dismal efforts recently, one over hurdles and one on the flat which doesn’t inspire much confidence. It’s quite possible that 24f stretched him over hurdles, but he didn’t jump with much fluency and was well fancied that day going off 7/2. Has something to prove back down in trip, but if fully wound up he will go well.

4 BREAKING BITS – Ever consistent and its rare not to see him in the shakeup. Good effort latest when upped to todays distance at Stratford (22f, Good). That effort seemed to suggest that he will get this distance well and if ridden more prominently by Nolan he will have a much better chance of taking victory. He’s won being held up and making all however, so its good to know that however the race is run he’ll be able to cope.

5 BOBBLE EMERALD – Both wins when making all, the latest of which came back in April at Ludlow over a similar distance (21.5f, Good to Soft). Not guaranteed a soft lead in this race and isn’t one to rely upon with lots of PU’s scattered across his record. Slight concern also with the ground as his only effort on Firm ground was poor, so passed over for today.

6 DO WE LIKE HIM – Last 3 efforts have been very poor, latest when a tailed off 8th over slightly longer at this venue last month (23f, Good). Won over hurdles at Exeter in October (21.5f, Good) but even that isn’t enough to tempt on current form.

7 THEPARTYSOVER – Has a decent record here and wasn’t disgraced 2 starts back when runner up here in May (17.5f, Good). There is a slight question mark as to whether this trip really suits, but has been running quite well of late and is pretty consistent so place claims.

8 LADY FROM GENEVA – Another horse who seems to save their best for Fontwell, however that wasn’t true when pulling up here over further in June over fences (25.5f, Good). Pulled up the start before over hurdles too at this venue (21.5f, Good) which really doesn’t read well. Has the ability to feature in this, but the question is whether she really wants to herself.

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