Friday horse racing tips 20 December – Mullins’ 2/1 Irish raider can land big Ascot prize
Get Brian Healy's race-by-race selections, best bets and daily NAP for Friday's UK and Irish horse racing meetings.
Friday’s fixture list of UK and Irish horse racing meetings take in five fixtures throughout the day with afternoon jumps racing from Uttoxeter and Ascot where two Grade Two contests in the shape of the Kennel Gate Hurdle and the Noel Novices’ Chase are both on the agenda at the Berkshire track’s Friday feature meeting.
There is also all-weather action meanwhile at Southwell on their fibresand surface in the afternoon; while in the evening under the floodlights there is racing on tapeta at Wolverhampton, and also on the Dundalk polytrack.
Uttoxeter (jumps) – 12.05 – 3.30pm (7 races)
Ascot (jumps) – 12.45 – 3.40pm (6 races)
Southwell (flat, aw) – 1.35 – 4.50pm (7 races)
Wolverhampton (flat, aw) – 5.00 – 8.30pm (8 races)
Dundalk (flat, aw) – 5.15 – 8.15pm (7 races)
BRIAN HEALY’S NAP OF THE DAY FOR FRIDAY 20 DECEMBER
(12.35) ENZO D’AIRY (11/10, Bet365) showed some useful form in France prior to joining Venetia Williams, and the Anzillero gelding made a decent first first of things when finishing fifth behind The Big Breakaway on his debut for his new handler at Chepstow last month.
Although beaten a long way, he shaped encouragingly and possibly just needed the outing so is expected to build on that run where he can do better here.
The winner of that race has scored again since, while he also had a subsequent winner behind him, and if he finds improvement for that debut experience then he could get off the mark here and give his in-form yard another winner.
(2.55) STORM WIZARD (10/11, Unibet) didn’t show a great deal in a handful of hurdles starts last term, but the Milan gelding was in the process of running well when switched to the larger obstacles at Bangor in April where he unseated his rider mid-race.
Venetia Williams’ Milan gelding was absent following that mishap until making a winning return to action back at Bangor seven days ago, and he could follow up here if that run hasn’t left a mark.
He has a 7lbs penalty to carry, but the manner of the win was impressive, and if he’s none the worse for that recent outing turned out quickly then every chance he can make his presence felt to double up here.
12.05 – Talkingpicturestv
12.35 – Enzo D’airy
1.10 – Good And Hardy
1.45 – One Style
2.20 – Out On The Tear
2.55 – Storm Wizard
3.30 – No Quarter Asked
(1.55) DEBUCHET (2/1, Unibet) made a winning transition to the larger obstacles when running out a four lengths’ winner over An Fraoch Mor at Fairyhouse last month, and Mags Mullins’ charge can take this prize back to Ireland.
The Smadoun gelding won a Listed bumper a couple of seasons ago, and he ran to a useful level over hurdles without winning, making the frame three times last campaign which included at Limerick in April before perhaps just finding three miles stretching him at Fairyouse in April.
Back from seven months off latest, he revelled in the testing conditions to score a ready success from the front, and the runner-up has won well since to give the form a boost.
He switches to handicapping for this latest assignment where a mark of 131 looks workable, and he is entitled to progress on the back of his first run over fences where he has conditions to suit, so every chance he can follow up here.
(3.05) ASHFIELD PADDY (4/1, Ladbrokes) was a winner in the point-to-point sphere prior to joining Jonjo O’Neill, and the Publisher gelding has shown progress with each of his three starts to date, bettering his finishing position each time and getting off the mark at Haydock earlier in the month when beating Teescomponentstrig.
That win came over further than this distance, and he overcame a late mistake to score a shade readily so may well have better still to come if coping with the drop back in trip here.
The form of that last-time win perhaps isn’t the strongest on offer, but he remains unexposed and a 5lbs rise in the weights for that success could prove workable so every chance he can remain competitive here..
A big run ought to see him go close, and open still to improvement on ground that shouldn’t inconvenience then he looks worth chancing in a competitive contest to follow up his last-time win.
12.45 – Angels Breath
1.20 – Bean In Trouble
1.55 – Debuchet
2.30 – Master Debonair
3.05 – Ashfield Paddy
3.40 – Butte Montana
(2.45) MAKAMBE (4/1, William Hill) was foiled in his hat-trick attempt here in November when finishing around five lengths’ fourth behind Fancy Footings; but Chelsea Banham’s charge wasted no time in bouncing back and the Dark Angel gelding wasn’t beaten far behind Silverturnstogold over course and distance latest, finding only that rival too strong.
A winner at Kempton in September, he followed up here in October when beating Love Your Work by just over one length, and he was perhaps guilty of conceding first run to his well-handicapped rival latest.
That winner has gone in again since, while the third horse home has struck back-to-back silver medals in his subsequent outings, and only raised 2lbs for this latest outing he ought to remain competitive.
(3.20) HAREEM QUEEN (6/4, Ladbrokes) arrives here chasing a hat-trick of wins, and Karl Burke’s charge can collect his three-timer having won both her previous starts over course and distance.
The Dark Angel filly returned from a break to run out an easy winner at this venue in October, scoring by four lengths, and she won readily again latest when beating Free Love by almost three lengths.
She has the potential for better still, and while the handicapper has hit her with a 9lbs rise in the weights there is a suspicion that she is still progressing and could easily find further improvement to follow up in this contest and back her hat-trick.
1.35 – Bee Machine
2.10 – Irish Minister
2.45 – Makambe
3.20 – Hareem Queen
3.50 – Noble Behest
4.20 – Waitaki
4.50 – Noble Peace
(6.15) DUKE OF PILAT (SP) shaped well on his debut over one mile at this course last month, and with that run under his belt the Medaglia d’Oro colt can improve to go one place better and get off the mark.
Joseph O’Brien’s charge was beaten only a half-length in that outing behind Aerclub, unable to sustain his effort to the line; but he ought to improve for that experience and can do better this time around.
An expensive purchase, he drops to seven furlongs here which ought to suit, and with the potential for better now he’s had an outing then he could prove a tough nut to crack here for his top yard.
(8.15) ROCKVIEW ROMAN (7/2, Unibet) has taken his form up a notch since switching to this surface and upped in trip, and John McConnell’s charge can land his hat-trick here.
The Holy Roman Emperor gelding arrives here following back-to-back wins, scoring by more than one length each time and latterly appearing to win with something to spare over Harvey Specter. That form has been franked by the third winning since, and a 6lbs rise in the weights should still leave him with scope for better still.
He meets some largely disappointing and exposed rivals here, and there is a suspicion that with the potential for better still to come he looks worth keeping onside as he bids for his three-timer.
4.45 – Hija De La Luna
5.15 – Lady In Lavender
5.45 – Sister Lola
6.15 – Duke Of Pilat
6.45 – Dancing On A Dream
7.15 – Annie B
7.45 – Sky Seven
8.15 – Rockview Roman
(5.30) AMAZING NEWS (SP) looked a promising recruit when offering plenty to work with on his debut at this venue last month, and with that experience under his belt then George Scott’s charge could improve to get off the mark now at the second attempt.
The Toronado gelding finished fourth on that occasion, beaten just under two lengths but looking green under pressure having travelled well in the race; but the experience won’t have been lost on him, and he could do better here with that outing under his belt.
He wore a hood in that first outing, but the headgear is left off this time around and he could be worth siding with to get off the mark on his second outing.
(8.00) HARRY’S RIDGE (11/8, BetVictor) is improving his finishing position with each start, and Eric Alston’s charge could get off the mark now at the fifth attempt.
The Acclamation gelding returned from six months off the track to run third behind Katherine Place, beaten just over one length having missed the start and racing detached for a time before finishing well from off the pace.
The bare form might only be ordinary, but he is unchanged at the weights and could have further progress to come taking on more exposed rivals, so he is chanced to continue his upward curve and open his win account now.
5.00 – The King’s Steed
5.30 – Amazing News
6.00 – Holy Eleanor
6.30 – Spreadsheet
7.00 – Dance To Paris
7.30 – El Hombre
8.00 – Harry’s Ridge
8.30 – Triple Nickle
BRIAN HEALY’S BEST BETS FOR FRIDAY 20 DECEMBER
12.35 Uttoxeter – ENZO D’AIRY (11/10, Bet365)
1.55 Ascot – DEBUCHET (2/1, Unibet) (NAP)
2.45 Southwell – MAKAMBE (4/1, William Hill)
2.55 Uttoxeter – STORM WIZARD (10/11, Unibet)
3.05 Ascot – ASHFIELD PADDY (4/1, Ladbrokes)
3.20 Southwell – HAREEM QUEEN (6/4, Ladbrokes)
5.30 Wolverhampton – AMAZING NEWS (SP)
6.15 Dundalk – DUKE OF PILAT (SP)
8.00 Wolverhampton – HARRY’S RIDGE (11/8, BetVictor)
8.15 Dundalk – ROCKVIEW ROMAN (7/2, Unibet)