ITV Racing Tips on Saturday, April 16th
ITV are showing EIGHT of the best races across the Newbury and Musselburgh cards. We’ve studied the cards and picked out our best bets for all eight races, with our top tips providing extra selections on what promises to be another unmissable day of racing.
Bullet Force (1.32 Musselburgh, Royal Mile Handicap) 15/2
BULLET FORCE was last seen finishing seventh in the Group 1 Vertem Futurity at Doncaster, where he never really looked like featuring. This is a much more realistic race for him, and Karl Burke’s colt can gain a thoroughly deserved win on his reappearance. His effort at Newmarket in October can be upgraded, seeing as he was the only one in the top four to have come from the rear of the field.
He has raced at Musselburgh once before, winning a shade cosily over seven furlongs. The second, third and fourth in that race went out and won next time out, so the form is impressive!
His biggest challenges will likely come from Desert Angel, who will strip fitter for his recent run at Wolverhampton, and Value Theory, who was racing in Class 1 company towards the end of last season and will find this much more winnable. Still, if he’s fit following his break, we feel Bullet Force is the one they all have to get past in order to win this.
Invite (1.50 Newbury, Finest Surprise Stakes – Registered As The John Porter Stakes) 9/1
Andrew Balding’s INVITE looks a huge price here. She had a fine debut season last year, winning three of her seven races and finishing second in two of the others. The only times she failed to finish in the top two were in Group 1 + 2 company.
Her best performance came when winning the Listed Stand Cup at Chester towards the end of last year. That effort was enough for connections to enter her in the Group 1 Fillies & Mares Stakes on Champions Day at Newmarket, but after blowing the start she could only finish a distant fifth.
This Group 3 race looks much more winnable. Her biggest rivals are likely to come from St Simon Stakes winner Ilaraab and Charlie & Mark Johnston’s Thunderous. Both will have live chances but with the fillies allowance here, we’re just siding with Invite to come out on top.
Zip (2.04 Musselburgh, Silver Arrow Handicap) 7/1
At a decent price, Richard Fahey’s ZIP can get a return to the winners enclosure for the first time this season. He would’ve needed his reappearance run when finishing sixth and never challenging, and now fully fit he can make his presence known here.
He won on his only previous visit to the course, holding on in a tight finish despite running freely. He is back down to that winning mark (89), and has jockey Billy Garrity back on board to do the steering. Everything points towards a big run and we’re chancing him to win at a big price.
Those at the head of the betting are all in with a shout, including Another Batt and Gobi Sunset, but Zip can put his course experience to good advantage here to land the honours.
Wild Beauty (2.25 Newbury, Dubai Duty Free Stakes – Registered As The Fred Darling Stakes) 9/4
This week it has paid to back virtually any horse who was part of the Appleby/Buick partnership and WILD BEAUTY looks a solid bet in the Fred Darling Stakes. Her Grade 1 win in the Natalma Stakes looks solid form, with the second in that race Pizza Bianca coming out and winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf next time out.
She is one of only three runners in the field to have won at Newbury so far (Jumbly + Nazanin being the others) and that course experience can be put to good use here. The ground should also be in her favour here, having finished in the top two in her three runs on good/good to firm ground.
Wild Beauty was beaten by Majestic Glory in the Sweet Solera Stakes back in August, but quickly reversed that form when finishing well clear of her in the Group 1 Fillies’ Mile in October.
Everything points towards a huge run from Wild Beauty. The previously mentioned Jumbly could give her most to think about, but William Buick looks like he means business this season and with the form he is in, we simply have to side with his ride.
Makanah (2.39 Musselburgh, Holyrood Handicap) 8/1
This looks like a huge price for MAKANAH. He absolutely loves Musselburgh – winning on two of his four visits here (other two were 2nd and 3rd placed finishes), and is more than capable of winning after returning from a break – having won three times on his reappearance run.
Last year he was inches away from winning, but after constantly finding his path blocked he just couldn’t reach the eventual winner Mokaatil. That was off 2lb higher so yet another reason to side with him.
Jockey Paul Mulrennan has been on board for each of his last three wins and we’re siding with him to yet another victory this weekend. There is plenty of pace in the race, so that should set up nicely for Makanah to pick them off in the finish. Everything points towards a big run from Julie Camacho’s horse here, and he’s our pick at a big price.
Perfect Power (3.00 Newbury, Greenham Stakes) 9/4
It’s difficult to see how Angel Bleu is favourite for this. He has only won once on Good/Good to Firm ground and that was in class 4 company. Since then, he has finished 13th and 2nd on the ground, showing he has a clear preference for softer ground, which he will not have this weekend. Instead, it pays to side with his closest market rival, PERFECT POWER.
Perfect Power has won all three races on good to firm ground, including winning the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket at the end of the season. His form is superb, winning four of his six races so far, including two Group 1’s and a Group 2.
Jockey Christophe Soumillon has come over for three rides at Newmarket, and this one looks to be his best chance of riding a winner. His biggest threat looks set to come from Lusail, but he flopped when last seen in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster. We’re expecting a big season from Perfect Power, so he’s a confident pick to get off to a winning start this season and going on to bigger and better things.
Sir Rumi (3.14 Musselburgh, Queen’s Cup) 13/2
Richard Hannon doesn’t send many horses to Musselburgh, but when he does it’s worth paying attention. He’s only sent six horses to the Scottish venue, and three of those have won. So it’s a tip in itself that he sends SIR RUMI here this weekend.
He finished almost seventh lengths clear of Dark Jedi on their reappearance run and there is no reason for them to reverse form here. His only run over this distance was on unsuitably soft ground (all his best form is on better ground), so with the forecast better ground here he can take the step up in trip in his stride and use his fitness advantage to get up and land this.
Enemy has been racing over in Dubai lately, so could be one to watch but he hasn’t been setting the world alight and Zero Ten will likely be his biggest challenger. He finished fifth at Deauville in Group 1 company over slightly further at the end of the season, and if returning at the same level he could give Sir Rumi most to think about. But Sir Rumi has had his prep run and at the odds, gets our verdict.
Rogue Bear (3.35 Newbury, Spring Cup Handicap) 7/2
The final race on ITV can go to Tom Clover’s ROGUE BEAR. He was a huge eye catcher when finishing third at Doncaster in the Lincoln, despite being hampered at the start and his high draw being a clear disadvantage on the day.
He beat Masked Identity last season, which looks a good bit of form as he went on to win a further four races last year. Rogue Bear’s reappearance run in the Lincoln should have him fully primed for this, and he should take all the beating here.
The likely strong pace in this race should benefit him, and he’s drawn in the centre of the track which is another bonus. Since stepping up to a mile he has won two and was unlucky in the Lincoln, so everything points towards a big race from our selection and he can sign us off with a winner in the final ITV race of the day.