We take a look at some of the top racing stories of the day in our new feature and provide our experts’ racing selections on Wednesday, March 1, 2017.

Kempton Races

Champion jockey Jim Crowley (right) may have a new retained role with Sheikh Hamdan al Maktoum, but insists “I don’t want anyone thinking I won’t be going for the title again”.
Former jump jockey Crowley won his first Flat title after a titanic battle with Silvestre De Sousa last year and the former champ gained his first winner with his first ride at Lingfield yesterday. Crowley said: “If I am still in with a shot when Glorious Goodwood comes round, I am definitely going to give it a go. I don’t want people to think I won’t be going for the title again. You simply can’t have that attitude.”
Source: Press Association

Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle favourite Death Duty has been tabbed by trainer Gordon Elliott as his top gun for the Cheltenham Festival. Unbeaten over hurdles, he will spearhead a strong challenge on March 17, with Lexus Chase winner Outlander and Don Poli both heading to the Timico Gold Cup. Speaking at yesterday’s media day Elliott said: “We’ll have several horses travelling over with decent chances but there’s no getting away from it – Death Duty appears to be our big hope. He’s a very good horse and I’d say the best novice hurdler we’ve had.” Death Duty is currently Bet4Causes’ 11/4 favourite for the 3m event.
Source: https://beta.racingpost.com/news/cheltenham-festival/albert-bartlett-favourite-death-duty-leads-charge-for-rampant-yard/276604


Gordon Elliott (right) will send a team of “about 30 horses across” to the Cheltenham Festival in two weeks’ time. While Don Cossack’s Timico Gold Cup victory was the highlight of three winners at the Festival last season, his star has subsequently been retired through injury. Elliott admitted: “On numbers I’d say we have a lot more fancied ones this year, but we had three winners last year and it will be hard to beat that.”
Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/racing/article-4269496/Gordon-Elliott-send-30-horses-Cheltenham.html

Tombstone will have to come through a satisfactory piece of work at the weekend to book his place in the  Champion Hurdle. Trained by Gordon Elliott, the recent conqueror of former 2m king Jezki needs to be supplemented for the March 14 feature. Elliott said: “If everything goes all right and he works all right at the weekend, the plan is we’ll probably run him in the Champion Hurdle. It’s a very good race, but it’s probably an open enough race. We’ve never had a runner in the Champion Hurdle, so I don’t know what it takes to win one, but why not have a go?”
Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/racing/article-4269496/Gordon-Elliott-send-30-horses-Cheltenham.html

Mutakayyef, who missed the  Winter Derby at Lingfield with a foot abscess, is still on course for the Dubai Turf. Trainer William Haggas said: “His foot is fine, it was just very unfortunate timing. He’ll be back ridden tomorrow and there’s no question of it ruling him out of Dubai. We’ll take him away for a gallop somewhere first, that will put him right.”
Source: https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/horseracing/2976927/william-haggas-confirms-mutakayyef-still-on-dubai-mission-despite-lingfield-setback/


Colin Tizzard has ruled King George VI Chase hero Thistlecrack out until Christmas following a second scan on his torn tendon. “Thistlecrack’s second scan came back exactly the same as the first, as we expected it would,” said Tizzard. “As communicated previously, Thistlecrack will not run again this season and all being well we’d expect him to be back at Christmas.”
Source: http://www.attheraces.com/news/2017/February/28/colin-tizzard-confirms-thistlecrack-expected-to-be-back-for-christmas

Camping Ground is set to miss the Cheltenham Festival in favour of the Aintree Hurdle, following his demolition job in the National Spirit Hurdle at Fontwell. Trainer Gary Moore said: “It was nice for the horse, he did it well and has come out of it pretty good. We just need to work out where to go with him now. I think two miles is too sharp and three miles is too far, so we need to go somewhere in between and we’re better off waiting for Liverpool.”
Source: http://www.attheraces.com/news/2017/February/28/gary-moore-eager-to-pitch-camping-ground-into-aintree-hurdle

The new 2kg (4.4lb) allowance for female jockeys in France starts today at Deauville. Apprentice Alison Massin has seven booked rides. In all, 13 of the 96 runners at Deauville will be ridden by women. France Galop vice president Jean-Pierre Colombu said he was surprised by the level of controversy the new measure has caused. “Debate is always a good thing and perhaps we will be proved wrong, although I don’t think so,” said Colombu. “Everyone is entitled to their own opinion.”
Source: https://beta.racingpost.com/news/international/new-era-starts-at-deauville-as-2kg-allowance-for-women-kicks-in/276559

Racing will be broadcast on ITV1 on Saturday for the first time since its launch on New Year’s Day. Seven races will be broadcast from Newbury and Doncaster. “It was just an opportunity that came up enabling us to do it, so that’s good. We’ve now got 42 days on the main channel,” said Grant Cunningham, ITV’s head of publicity, factual and sport.
Source: https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/horseracing/2975217/terrestrial-coverage-boost-for-horse-racing-as-itv-increases-itv1-racedays-to-42/

Today’s MCB British Racing selections – Tuesday, February 28, 2017

MUSSELBURGH: 2.00 Major Ridge, 2.30 Dear Sire, 3.00 Improved, 3.30 Pekanheim, 4.00 Superior Command, 4.30 Darwins Fox, 5.00 Miss Barbossa

WINCANTON: 2.10 Fountains Windfall, 2.40 Driftwood Haze, 3.10 Orbasa, 3.40 Apple’s Queen, 4.10 Ruby Russet, 4.40 Chivers

FFOS LAS: 2.20 Bob Mahler, 2.50 DUELING BANJOS (NAP), 3.20 Fille Des Champs, 3.50 Alf  ’N’ Dor, 4.20 Batavir, 4.50 Well Smitten

NEWCASTLE: 5.30 Out Of Order, 6.00 Foie Gras, 6.30 Sandstream, 7.00 Spititofhayton (nb), 7.30 Art Obsession, 8.00 Fiery Spice

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We take a look at some of the top racing stories of the day in our new feature and provide our experts’ racing selections on Tuesday, February 21, 2017.

Newbury Races

Jockey Club Racecourses (JCR) plans to contribute a record £22.9m towards prize money this year, an increase of £2.1m on 2016. A total of £45m is earmarked for JCR’s 15 tracks which have 341 fixtures, with £1.4m of the extra funding going to jump racing. Its seven smaller tracks – Carlisle, Exeter, Huntingdon, Market Rasen, Nottingham, Warwick and Wincanton – will see more than £100,000 extra each in prize money and as much as £241,000 in the case of Carlisle. JCR group MD Paul Fisher said: “All levels of British Racing will benefit from the prize money increase, but I hope the clear boost for National Hunt racing and the grassroots of our sport is particularly welcome.”
Source: http://www.racingpost.com/news/live.sd?event_id=24055224&category=0

The announcement of £22.9m in prize-money at Jockey Club Racecourses (JCR) this year has been well received. Racehorse Owners Association (ROA) chief executive Charlie Liverton said: “This announcement from Jockey Club Racecourses is excellent news for owners and horsemen, and I am further delighted that grassroots racing has seen particular focus. This extra support for the middle and lower tier of British Racing is clearly needed and is welcome. That is where it can help the majority of racehorse owners and horsemen and where more investment is needed around the country.”
Source: http://www.thejockeyclub.co.uk/news/prize-money-contribution-up-by-21-million-to-record-229m

Bristol De Mai.jpg

The Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Bristol De Mai (right), who flopped in the Denman Chase at Newbury having previously been an impressive winner of the Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock, is still on course for the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup. Pushed out to 25/1 for the March 17 showpiece by MyClubBetting yesterday, Anthony Bromley, representing owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede, was upbeat. He said: “We’re still going to have a go at the Gold Cup,” but added, “it’s a big roll of the dice. Even the distance is still an unknown and there are some very smart horses in there. He’s a lovely horse but he is an outsider, don’t get us wrong”.
Source: http://www.racingpost.com/news/live.sd?event_id=24055224&category=0

Superb Story has been ruled out of the Champion Hurdle after suffering a tendon injury. He won comfortably on his only start of the season at Musselburgh, but trainer Dan Skelton tweeted: “Superb Story will not be running at Cheltenham. He’s got a small lesion in a tendon and will need time off. Possibly back in December.”
Source: http://www.sportinglife.com/racing/news/article/465/10775911/superb-story-out-of-champion-hurdle-with-tendon-injury

ITV has launched new app, ITV Racing, in a tie-up with developer Monterosa. It features a new £100,000 predictor contest ITV7. ITV Digital Studios online editorial director Sheena Peirse said: “Horse racing is a major priority for us and we see the app as a crucial way to reach new and existing fans of the sport and launch the ITV7 competition.”
Source: http://www.broadcastnow.co.uk/news/itv-launches-horseracing-app/5115201.article

The Neil King-trained Lil Rockerfeller will bid to become the first back-to-back winner of the National Spirit Hurdle since Lough Derg after being given the green light for Sunday’s feature at Fontwell. Owner Andy Smith said: “Lil Rockerfeller did a fantastic piece of work on Saturday morning, which Neil was delighted with, so we’re confident he’s over his last run and we go to Fontwell with high hopes.” Nicky Henderson’s L’Ami Serge, second in the Relkeel Hurdle at Cheltenham and Different Gravey are also among the entries for the Cheltenham Stayers’ Hurdle trial.
Source: http://www.arenaracingcompany.co.uk/news/story/295

Emma Lavelle Getty.jpg

Emma Lavelle (right) is doing a rain dance ahead of Saturday’s Eider Handicap Chase for last year’s runner-up Shotgun Paddy. Lavelle said: “I’ve heard a going report saying ‘lovely drying wind’ – that is no good for him, but there is some rain about so hopefully it hits Newcastle. He’s a solid stayer and he deserves to win one of these big chases because he’s knocked on the door in so many of them.”
Source: http://www.sportinglife.com/racing/news/article/465/10775728/shotgun-paddy-in-line-for-eider-chase-honours

When it comes to Forest Bihan’s chances of landing the Racing Post Arkle Trophy, trainer Brian Ellison is a realist. “The favourite looks nailed on – Altior looks like a machine so we’re obviously running for place money, but we’ll see,” he said. Forest Bihan has won three of his four starts over fences and was cut to 20/1 by MyClubBetting after Ellison added: “He’s very well, I actually think he’s a little underrated looking at his price.”
Source: http://www.sportinglife.com/racing/news/article/465/10775684/brian-ellison-aims-forest-bihan-at-arkle-trophy-at-cheltenham http://www.attheraces.com/news/2017/February/20/brian-ellison-happy-to-take-arkle-challenge-with-forest-bihan

Capitaine is likely to be made favourite Saturday’s Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle at Kempton, a recognised trial for Cheltenham’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. Paul Nicholls’ five-year-old chased home Finian’s Oscar in the Grade 1 Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown last time and heads 12 entries, along with Alan King’s Elgin.
Source: http://www.sportinglife.com/racing/preview/763094/capitaine-reaches-for-the-sky

Mutakayyef will have to concede upwards of 5lb to his rivals in the Winter Derby at Lingfield on Saturday. William Haggas’ six-year-old will face a maximum of 10 rivals, all of whom are rated 9lb or more lower, and is likely to be the MyClubBetting favourite. Former stablemate Battalion, now with Jamie Osborne, is also among the leading fancies with the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Convey.
Source: http://www.sportinglife.com/racing/preview/763094/capitaine-reaches-for-the-sky

Terry Doherty, stud manager for Watership Down Stud, has been named as Employee of the Year 2017 at the Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff awards in a ceremony at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel in London’s Knightsbridge. The perpetual Godolphin Trophy was presented by Freddy Tylicki, along with a cheque for £40,000, of which £20,000 will be shared amongst the staff at the Stud. It was part of £120,000 in prize money awarded by sponsors Godolphin. Chairman of the Judging Panel Brough Scott said: “The finalists were of a quite exceptional standard and it was really inspiring for the judges to hear their stories. However, in the end, Terry emerged as a clear and very fine winner and I am sure he will be a great ambassador for the sport.” Source: http://www.racingpost.com/news/live.sd?event_id=24071724&category=0

Today’s MCB British Racing selections – Tuesday, February 21, 2017

SOUTHWELL: 2.10 Log Off, 2.40 Elegantly Bound, 3.10 Vroom, 3.40 Lady Nayef, 4.10 Bounty Pursuit, 4.40 Horseguardsparade

TAUNTON: 2.20 Viking Mistress, 2.50 Lake Shore Drive, 3.20 Verdana Blue, 3.50 Heroes Or Ghosts, 4.20 Top Tug, 4.50 Monsieur Gibraltar, 5.20 My Story

WETHERBY: 2.00 Café Au Lait, 2.30 Money Maid, 3.00 Jerrysback, 3.30 Groomed, 4.00 Modulus, 4.30 Scarlet Fire, 5.00 Our Belle Aime

Today’s Lucky 15 Selections: Monsieur Gibraltar (Taunton 4.50), Bounty Pursuit (Southwell 4.10), Jerrysback (Wetherby 3.00), Elegantly Bound (Southwell 2.40)

Bet via Bet4Causes, where 20% of net revenue goes to sporting charities, who include Greatwood and World Horse Welfare.

Horse racing Lucky 15 – Sunday’s top selections

Each day Bet4Causes will mark your card, providing a preview of the day’s racing and offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.

Take a look at our Lucky 15 selections (four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold) for the British meetings on Sunday, February 5, 2017.

Haydock Park hurdles grey.jpg



FRODON (Musselburgh 2.10) really cannot be opposed in the Scottish Future Champions Novices’ Chase. He was well held in second when tipping up at Kempton on Boxing Day, but his previous form, when rattling off four wins in five starts, came against some really crack chasers. He is best judged on his win in the Grade 3 Caspian Caviar Gold Cup at Cheltenham in early December. Anything like a repeat of that sort of form should Paul Nicholls’ five-year-old home and hosed.

BIG WINDMILL (Taunton 3.20) was jumping well on his chasing debut at Ludlow when he stumbled on landing at the third fence and unshipped his rider in a race won by Un Prophete. He does not have a great deal of experience, running just three times over hurdles before the switch to fences, but he was significantly well supported last time. Tom George’s six-year-old can be forgiven that minor faux pas and we hope he’ll be a different proposition in the 2m2f limited handicap chase off a nice mark of 112.

SAN BENEDETO (Musselburgh 3.10) is by no means a good thing in the Scottish Champion Chase, especially with the smart Baltimore Rock in attendance. However, we side with Paul Nicholls’ runner, who was a little unlucky to unseat Sam Twiston-Davies at Cheltenham in December, before running a fair third to Poker School in a Kempton handicap on Boxing Day, off today’s mark of 140. A drop in trip could be in his favour as he takes on five rivals in the extended 1m7½f event.

ABRACADABRA SIVOLA (Taunton 4.20) has yet to win a handicap over fences and was very unfortunate to bump into the in-form Alfie Spinner at Wincanton last month. He drew a little way clear of the third in that extended 3m2½f handicap chase and David Pipe’s runner still looks fairly weighted. He drops back in trip today to 2m7f and while that won’t make a huge difference, the seven-year-old may be able to land the competitive heat or at least give a big run for our money.



MUSSELBURGH: 1.40 Tree Of Liberty, 2.10 FRODON (NAP) 2.40 Lough Derg Spirit, 3.10 San Benedeto, 3.40 Monbeg Charmer, 4.10 Oscar Rock, 4.40 Captain Woodie

TAUNTON: 1.50 Volpone Jelois, 2.20 Albert D’olivate, 2.50 Caid Du Lin, 3.20 Big Windmill (nb), 3.50 Verni, 4.20 Abracadabra Sivola, 4.50 Brandon Roc


Bet via Bet4Causes, where 20% of net revenue goes to sporting charities, who include Greatwood and World Horse Welfare.

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Horse racing Lucky 15 – Saturday’s top selections

Each day Bet4Causes will mark your card, providing a preview of the day’s racing and offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.

Our NAP and next-best selections were both bang on the money on Friday, so take a look at our Lucky 15 selections (four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold) for the British meetings on Saturday, February 4, 2017.

Fontwell Races



CALETT MAD (Wetherby 2.45) appears the one they all have to beat in the Grade 2 Towton Novices’ Chase. Daryl Jacob was hardly enamoured with him after he won at Taunton over 2m7f last month, saying that he was “a typical French (jumping) type, but he gets from A to B”, so there are some doubts that he will get round without making a blunder or two. He was keen the time before and if the ground is softer than hoped, he may not see this 3m out as well as some of his five rivals. However, Taunton was not his track and Wetherby should suit him much better. He made light of his mark of 138 last time and while he has been whacked up 10lb, Nigel Twiston-Davies’ five-year-old has plenty of improvement in him yet.

PROJECT BLUEBOOK (Musselburgh 1.30) is our next-best selection on a day where there is plenty of choice. Twice a winner here last month, he may land the hat-trick as he steps up in class for the Listed Scottish Triumph Hurdle Trial Juvenile Hurdle – which just goes to show that races can be as cumbersomely-named as horses. We get that it is a hurdle race, right? It is not so good that we have to name it twice. The selection, trained by John Quinn and ridden by Brian Hughes, takes on five rivals after making a mockery of his opening handicap mark. A fast-run 2m is ideal for him. The only question is whether we shall get it here in winter ground.

GRENDISAR (Lingfield Park 3.05) goes for a third successive win in the Winter Derby Trial at Lingfield. The definition of Derby is open to question. In our minds, a Derby is a race run over 1m4f – not 1m2f. Heaven forbid, that is way too French for us. Last season Marco Botti’s runner enjoyed a great all-weather campaign, landing this race, the Winter Derby and the Easter Classic on Good Friday. He has been beaten on his only two starts this term over course and distance, but those races were not run to suit him and he comes into his own after shaking the cobwebs off. He loves the track and you would have to be hopeful he could beat his seven rivals.

OTAGO TRAIL (Sandown 3.35) is going to have to put up a stellar performance carrying 11st 12lb on what is likely to be deep winter ground – which begs the question: should Kempton Park really be shuttered by The Jockey Club and the King George VI Chase moved to the Esher track if a spot of rain turns Sandown into a mud-bath? We are willing to save that conversation for another day. We don’t think it will happen for one thing. Otago Trail is in the care of the lovely Venetia Williams, who knows just how to train horses for conditions such as these. The nine-year-old is one of our favourite horses in training and he chased home Bristol De Mai in a strong renewal of the Peter Marsh Case at Haydock last time. That is top-class form in all but name. The worry is the race may have come a bit too soon but the trip is fine and this 3m handicap chase might be a decent Grand National prep.

Sandown Jumps geberic.jpg


SANDOWN PARK: 12.40 Coeur De Lion, 1.15 Pearls Legend, 1.50 Buveur D’air, 2.25 Le Prezien, 3.00 Behind Time, 3.35 Otago Trail, 4.05 Cheque En Blanc

WETHERBY: 1.05 Tearsofclewbay, 1.40 Red Spinner, 2.15 Mirasaale, 2.45 CALETT MAD (NAP), 3.20 Point The Way, 3.55 Open Hearted, 4.25 Out Of Style

LINGFIELD PARK: 12.50 Saleh, 1.25 Saborido, 2.00 Gracious John, 2.30 Vimy Ridge, 3.05 Grendisar, 3.40 Varsovian, 4.15 Appy Days

MUSSELBURGH: 12.25 Dear Sire, 12.55 Doubldisdoubledat, 1.30 Project Bluebook (nb), 2.05 Azure Fly, 2.40 Pads, 3.15 Drumcliff, 3.45 Wonderful Charm, 4.20 Final Countdown

NEWCASTLE: 5.45 Mystique Moon, 6.15 Things Happen, 6.45 Table Manners, 7.15 Garrick, 7.45 Revolutionary War, 8.15 Poppy In The Wind, 8.45 Spirit Of Zebedee


Bet via Bet4Causes, where 20% of net revenue goes to sporting charities, who include Greatwood and World Horse Welfare.

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Horse racing Lucky 15 – Friday’s top selections

Each day Bet4Causes will mark your card, providing a preview of the day’s racing and offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.

Take a look at our Lucky 15 selections (four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold) for the British meetings on Friday, January 20, 2017.

Huntingdon Races



MOSCOW CALLING (Musselburgh 3.30) has been raised 4lb since finishing runner-up to Landmarque in a handicap hurdle over today’s 3m course and distance. The extra mile on only his fifth run over hurdles seemed to benefit Nicky Richards’ six-year-old, who was making a return after three months off. That was also is handicap debut (off a mark of 74) and he was equipped with first-time blinkers.  While a lot depends on the headgear working again, this appears to be his trip for now and he has plenty of scope for improvement against some seasoned performers who have hardly set the world alight.

GENTLEMEN (Lingfield 2.35) was in fine fettle this time last year, stringing up a five-win sequence in seven runs starting in January and culminating with his fourth success at Chelmsford in June. His last success came off a mark of 93, but he has proven to be a dream for the handicapper since, with a string of near misses of slightly higher marks. Phil McEntee’s six-year-old has proven wholly consistent and while beaten a length and a half by Pretend at Kempton last time, there was plenty to like about his attitude. This is his first run at Lingfield, but whatever happens today in this 6f handicap off a mark of 96, he will be interesting once back on turf, where he is rated 8lb lower.

THE LINKSMAN (Musselburgh 4.05) is a half-brother to the smart hurdler/chaser For Non Stop and showed plenty of promise, despite hanging right throughout on his bumper debut behind Ballyandy at Worcester in October 2015. He had to be left alone by trainer Brian Ellison thereafter as he had a few minor problems, but he built on that initial promise with a decent winning effort on his return in December, beating Dear Sire by a length and a half over 2m1f at Sedgefield. He carries a penalty today and there is no question he will come into his own over further and when an obstacle is placed in front of him, but he may well be able to follow up in the extended 1m7½f bumper.

THE WORLDS END (Chepstow 1.40) would appear to have a simple task of following up his 11-length maiden hurdle success here last month when he takes on five rivals in an extended 2m3f novices’ hurdle. Tom George’s five-year-old looks a nice prospect and he picked up well in tacky ground last time, giving the impression that he boasts plenty of ability. He could be a very interesting tool when send over fences as he is not without scope. He may well make it three wins in three runs at this track today.

Lingfield Races


CHEPSTOW: 1.40 The Worlds End, 2.10 Tanit River, 2.45 Atlanta Ablaze, 3.20 Walk On Al, 3.50 Earlshill, 4.25 Edeiff’s Lad

LINGFIELD PARK: 1.00 Imperial City, 1.30 Roundabout Magic, 2.00 Oratorio’s Joy, 2.35 Gentlemen, 3.10 Pharoh Jake, 3.40 Keswick

MUSSELBURGH: 12.50 Arantes, 1.20 Mister Don, 1.50 Princes Mononoke, 2.25 Stamp Your Feet, 3.00 Pekanheim, 3.30 Moscow Calling, 4.05 The Linksman

WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.45 Tailor’s Row, 6.15 Archie Stevens, 6.45 Mystique Moon, 7.15 City Of Angkor Wat, 7.45 Kay Sera, 8.15 Claude Greenwood


Bet via Bet4Causes, where 20% of net revenue goes to sporting charities, who include Greatwood and World Horse Welfare.

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Horse racing Lucky 15 – Tuesday’s top selections

Each day Bet4Causes will mark your card, providing a preview of the day’s racing and offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.

Take a look at our Lucky 15 selections (four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold) for the British meetings on Tuesday, January 3, 2017.




STIPULATE (Musselburgh 12.30) was well supported for his hurdling debut here in early November, understandably so, given that he is a 100-rated animal on the Flat and had appeared in some decent handicaps from 1m to 1m6f. However, despite his hurdling being slick, the Brian Ellison-trained eight-year-old was beaten over six lengths into fourth behind The Character in what looked a fair novices’ hurdle for the money. The experience would have helped the selection, who is worth another chance to get off the mark in this sphere as he takes on eight rivals in the 1m7½f maiden hurdle.

GLORIOUS POLITICS (Newcastle 2.10) has had just two runs in sprint maidens for David Barron and has not been beaten far in either. This 45,000gns half-brother to three winners, including the decent Shared Equity, showed promise on his York debut in October, finishing just over 3l behind Carlton Frankie in a 5½f affair. The Delegator colt was quite well supported in a slightly weaker grade when making his all-weather debut here in a 6f maiden in late November, when short-headed by Six Strings. A similar level of improvement should see him in the mix again as he takes on eight rivals in a similar race.

FAIR LOCH (Musselburgh 3.00) won a modest 1m7½f handicap chase in fine style at Ayr in October on only his second try over fences, 11 months after unseating is rider at Kempton on his first attempt. The manner in which he beat Quick Decision by 11 lengths suggested there was a bit more to come, even though the race fell apart somewhat. He takes on three more experienced rivals today and takes a step up in class for the Kilmany Cup Handicap Chase over an extended 1m7½f. While the handicapper has taken the form of his win literally, somewhat unfairly hiking him up 10lb to a mark of 128, he is unexposed and will relish any ease in the ground.

BUTTERCUP (Bangor-On-Dee 1.45) is still looking for a first win in six starts for Venetia Williams since joining the yard from France early last year. Despite not winning, her French form was not bad and she was thought good enough by connections to run in a Listed mares’ novices’ hurdle at Doncaster last March. Having had eight months off the track before making her British chasing debut at Uttoxeter early last month, she was entitled to fade late on in an extended 2m4½f novices’ limited handicap hurdle when third to Return Flight. That form was franked somewhat when the runner-up, Altesse De Guye, was a close-up second again at Taunton last week. With the stable bang in form, the selection would appear to hold a fair chance of breaking her duck in the extended 2m4f novices’ limited handicap chase.

Chelmsford City AW 4 Dark.jpg


BANGOR-ON-DEE: 1.15 Copper Birch, 1.45 Buttercup, 2.20 Red Square Revival, 2.50 Scooby, 3.20 Dingo Dollar, 3.50 Celebre D’allen

MUSSELBURGH: 12.30 STIPULATE (NAP), 1.00 Golden Town, 1.30 Formidableopponent, 2.00 Rioja Day, 2.30 Cruachan, 3.00 Fair Loch, 3.30 Beyond The Clouds

NEWCASTLE: 2.10 Glorious Politics (nb), 2.40 Medicine Hat, 3.10 Avoidable, 3.40 Go George Go, 4.10 Monticello, 4.40 Playtothewhistle, 5.10 Red Pike


Bet via Bet4Causes, where 20% of net revenue goes to sporting charities, who include Greatwood and World Horse Welfare.

You must be 18+ in order to bet. Please gamble responsibly http://www.gambleaware.co.uk

Horse racing Lucky 15 – New Year’s Day’s top selections

Each day Bet4Causes will mark your card, providing a preview of the day’s racing and offering what the experts feel will be the value bets of the day.

We ended 2016 as we started it – with a winning NAP. Take a look at our Lucky 15 selections (four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold) for the British meetings on Sunday, January 1, 2017.

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O O SEVEN (Cheltenham 1.25) made a good start to his chasing career when scoring with ease at Cheltenham, beating he useful Sizing Tennessee and Rock The Kasbah in November. The strapping son of Flemensfirth won over 3m as a hurdler and he was a fine second in a Grade 1 novice hurdle at Punchestown in April. So it was something of a surprise that he was a beaten third as an odds-on favourite for his second spin over fences at Doncaster last time. The Nicky Henderson-trained seven-year-old did not quite get home over that 3m trip and he drops back to a more realistic 2m4½f as he takes on four rivals in the Grade 2 Dipper Chase, with the JLT Novices’ Chase at the Festival meeting still the long-term plan.

SUTTER’S MILL (Fakenham 2.30) has twice gone close in a couple of handicap hurdles off a mark of 100, at Ffos Las (2m4f) and Bangor (2m7f) and takes a slight step up in class today for a 2m7f event. The Evan Williams-trained six-year-old is still learning his craft but appears to be progressing with each run and while he races off a 5lb higher mark in taking on four rivals (including stablemate Abbeygrey), he appears to see this trip out well enough to think he can win one of these before too long.

CHARMIX (Exeter 3.00) is a 145-rated hurdler, so it is fair to say he has been a little disappointing in two starts over fences. He was free in taking on the subsequent winner at Fontwell in October on his chasing debut and was a little one-paced between the last two fences, having led again, at Bangor in November. Harry Fry’s inmate still has plenty of scope for improvement and he is given another chance in a 2m3f beginners’ chase against a few who look equally in need of the experience.

SIMMPLY SAM (Catterick 3.20) is not the most consistent sort. On a going day, she is genuine. On other days, she leaves connections feeling flummoxed and frustrated. However, Marjorie Fife’s 10-year-old made a promising return after seven months off when a distant third to Annie Alainn in a 2m½f soft-ground handicap hurdle at Newcastle early last month, which is a trip well short of her optimum. In April she had scored over 2m4½f off a mark of 74 and was not beaten far a few weeks later over 2.5 off a rating of 81. The step up to an extended 3m1f may prove pivotal and the booking of Brian Harding is intriguing.

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CHELTENHAM: 12.15 Baden, 12.50 Arpege D’alene, 1.25 O O SEVEN (NAP), 2.00 Tenor Nivernais, 2.35 Call To Order, 3.10 Cole Harden, 3.40 Dentley De Mee

MUSSELBURGH: 12.30 Enola Gay, 1.05 Mister Don, 1.40 Viens Chercher, 2.15 Very First Time, 2.50 Mirsaale, 3.25 Dominada

EXETER: 12.40 Neon Wolf, 1.15 Capeland, 1.50 What Else, 2.25 Zanstra, 3.00 Charmix, 3.30 Bertie Boru, 4.00 Pearl Royale

CATTERICK: 12.25 Master Of Irony, 1.00 Crakehall Lad, 1.35 Jimmy The Jetplane, 2.10 The Bay Oak, 2.45 Nautical Twilight, 3.20 Simmply Sam

FAKENHAM: 12.45 Bowdler’s Magic, 1.20 Tommy The Rascal, 1.55 Djarkalin, 2.30 Sutter’s Mill (nb), 3.05 Artifice Sivola, 3.35 Benability

SOUTHWELL: 12.05 Private Donald, 12.35 Things Happen, 1.10 Un Fear Ciuin, 1.45 Landing Night, 2.20 Shyron, 2.55 Greyfriarschorista, 3.30 Limerick Lord


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