Friday’s race of the day – Tips for the big Handicap Hurdle at Uttoxeter

We take a look through the runners in the Class Two Handicap Hurdle at Uttoxeter and provide readers with our tips on Friday 18th October.

Friday’s action is headlined by a strong card on the all-weather at Dundalk, where a Group Three prize will be up for grabs. Here in England, however, the Class Two Handicap Hurdle at Uttoxeter is the main event on the afternoon and we’ve taken a look at each of the eleven entrants to try and find the winner.

Culture De Sivola

Won three mile handicaps off 125 and 135 during 2018. Struggled in two Graded contests after that and was also comfortably beaten in a Pertemps Qualifier at Exeter in between. Goes well fresh and Chester Williams takes a valuable five pounds off her back. Should be a big player despite lengthy odds.

De Rasher Counter

This seems like a warm-up run before a tilt at the Ladbrokes Trophy at the end of next month. Emma Lavelle’s powerful was gelding was always going to make a chaser and still have room for improvement over fences. Would be surprised if he was fully wound up and not nearly as effective in hurdles races.

De Vous A Moi

Eleven-year-old who has been off the track for well over 600 days, having picked up an injury following a victory over fences in January 2018. Had ability when last seen, but it would be a huge shock if he was good enough to challenge here, especially after such a lengthy lay-off.

Final Choice

Carries a seven-pound penalty after a bloodless triumph in a Class Three contest over course-and-distance. Adam West’s charge has won on both his most recent runs around this track and carried top weight with distinction when cruising to a seven-length success last week. This looks much tougher though.

Graceful Legend

Managed to win once in seven starts over fences last season, well-beaten on solitary start over hurdles. Often needs a run or two to get into her stride, but Ben Case’s mare is experienced and could be well-handicapped off this handicap mark. Also won comfortably in mixed-sex company last season.

Mcnamaras Band

Interesting handicap debutante for the in-form Philip Hobbs yard. Slipped up when tanking to the front on hurdling debut, then followed a third behind Dickie Diver with a ten-length maiden triumph over Mercy Mercy Me last season. Clearly has talent, but could be outmuscled in with many seasoned handicappers.

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Philip Hobbs (left) and Richard Johnson (right) will team up with favourite, Mcnamaras Band.

 

Pobbles Bay

Very effective staying chaser, who produced excellent performance to win at Ffos Las back in April. Was well-beaten on his reappearance in a lesser race than this on his reappearance last season though, and travels to Uttoxeter four-pounds higher in the handicap.

Sir Will

Progressed nicely on the handicap hurdle circuit during 2017/18, reaching a rating of 132 after a series of strong wins and placed efforts. Didn’t run until January last season and looked out-of-sorts on all three starts afterwards. Has ability, but comes into new season with something to prove.

Sirobbie

Made debut for Harry Whittington at Huntingdon in March and went on to appear in seven races between then and July. Won three of his last four outings, with all three coming over course-and-distance. Busy summer campaign points towards a love of good ground, so going won’t fill team with too much confidence. Could be a danger at the bottom of the weights though.

Tea Time Fred

Already run a couple of times this season and will be looking to seal a four-timer on Friday. Managed to win off previous career-high mark last time out, but now eight pounds higher in the handicap and you’d be surprised if there was more to come from this ten-year-old.

The Two Amigos

Won two good-quality handicap chases last winter, but hasn’t been seen since taking a heavy fall in the Grand National Trial at Haydock in February. A maiden over the smaller obstacles, placing just once in six starts during his novice hurdling campaign in 16/17. Seemingly little going for him.

Verdict

Five-year-old Sirobbie clearly likes it here at Uttoxeter and could have a say in the matter if he takes to the soft ground. Graceful Legend has to be considered too, but it’s with fellow mare, CULTURE DE SIVOLA where I’d rather pin my colours at a massive price.

Nick Williams mare has won on the back of significant breaks on three occasions and ran well to place third in a Listed Hurdle on her reappearance last season. Culture De Sivola managed to win on soft ground at Haydock back in March 2018 and, although she was beaten into fifth at Exeter in February, ran up to a good level off a mark one pound higher than this. She gets my vote.