Guide to Thursday’s ITV Racing

Raz De Maree - Welsh National

It was a Boxing Day full of drama yesterday as Buveur D’Air got narrowly beaten by stablemate Verdana Blue in the Christmas Hurdle to bring his two year winning sequence to an end. Clan Des Obeaux gave his trainer Paul Nicholls a tenth King George success, but you have to feel for connections of Waiting Patiently who was brought down by Bristol De Mai. Eight races on ITV4 this afternoon with four from Chepstow where the highlight is the Welsh National. Another four contests at Kempton complete their Christmas Festival with a bang as the mighty Altior takes his chance in the Desert Orchid Chase. Our ITV Racing tips are live!

Wide open Welsh National

Ladbrokes Trophy runner up Elegant Escape heads the betting for the Welsh National and it’s easy to see why as he doesn’t have to carry a 4lb penalty on this occasion. His Grade 1 form from last season reads well and this extra stamina test should suit him based on how well he’s been staying on over shorter. Ramses De Teillee won the recognised trial for this contest to extend his unbeaten record over fences at Chepstow to three. He’s 3lb well-in under a penalty but the slight doubt surrounding him would be stamina as he’s yet to win over further than three miles. Gordon Elliott sends over Folsom Blue who looked unlucky not to win the Irish National last season and is just 3lbs higher. Vieux Lion Rouge appears to have benefited from wind surgery as he finished his race off really strongly in the Becher Chase last time and should play a big part off just a pound higher over this longer trip.

Our Welsh Grand National tips are on site!

Kalashnikov has four to beat in Wayward Lad

Both Lalor and Mengli Khan have suffered defeats in recent weeks, which leaves the door ajar for Kalashnikov to grab the Arkle antepost market by the horns. He’s been an effortless winner of both starts over fences so far, he’s stepping up in grade here but based on his hurdles form, should take all the beating. Dynamite Dollars was a Grade 1 winner last time so has to carry a penalty here. He already appears a much better chaser than hurdler and arguably sets the standard. Maria’s Benefit is an extremely talented Mare who’s two from two over fences. Her bold, front running style could see her hard to catch here if given an easy lead.

Our Wayward Lad tips are on site!

Going Reports

Leopardstown – Hurdles – Good to Yielding, Chase – Good

Limerick – Hurdles – Soft, Soft to Heavy in places, Chase – Soft, Yielding to Soft in places

Chepstow – Soft

Wetherby – Soft, Good to Soft in places

Kempton – Good to Soft, Good in places

Wolverhampton – Standard

Market Movers

1.40pm Wetherby – Chingachgook (10/1 into 9/2)

2.00pm Wolverhampton – Sellingallthetime (28/1 into 9/1)

2.05pm Limerick – Capacurry Zak (25/1 into 6/1)

4.10pm Wolverhampton – Mushaageb (10/1 into 4/1)

Thursday’s Tips

The good run of our Next Best tips continued on Boxing Day as we made it five winners from the last seven, today’s runs at Wolverhampton. Our Early Value tip also ran a blinder yesterday when finishing second at 50/1 to add to our 50/1 and 33/1 places last week. Today’s tip runs at Kempton.

Stat Of The Day

Venetia Williams has won five of the last six runnings of the 1.05pm at Chepstow, she saddles Calipto in this seasons renewal.

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