Monday’s race of the day – Top tips for Taunton’s Listed Mares’ feature

Jon Vine takes a look through the runners set to contest this Listed Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at Taunton and provides readers with his tips in Monday’s race of the day on Monday 30th December.

The action may slow down considerably on Monday, compared to the incredible racing we’ve been treated to since Christmas day, but there are still some interesting contests to take in. The race of the day is undoubtedly the Listed Mares’ Hurdle for novices at Taunton, and I’ve looked at each of the runners to find my best bet with BetFred.

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Monday’s Race Of The Day

Deja Vue

Narrowly beaten in a couple of maidens, before getting off the mark with an emphatic triumph on heavy ground at Ffos Las, carrying odds of 1/5 to a 40-length triumph. Bolted up on handicap debut last time, earning a 13-pound rating rise following an eleven-length victory. Soft ground here will suit and should be competitive on first start in Listed company. Others who are proven at this level are preferred though.

It’s Probably Me

Entered the Listed Abram Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at Haydock on the back of a fifth-place finish in the Listed bumper for Mares’ at Cheltenham in November. Unseated rider at the first that day, but wasn’t really fancied in the build-up and looks to have plenty to prove on second start over obstacles.

Marie’s Rock

Drifted a little ahead of her hurdles debut in a competitive Introductory Hurdle at Haydock earlier this month. Was a little keen early on, but soon settled and put the race to bed in decisive fashion. Plenty more to come from this unbeaten mare. Looks well-suited to two miles.

Nicky Henderson will have high hopes for Marie’s Rock here at Taunton.

Midnights’ Gift

Reached a rating of 80 on the flat. Unbeaten in two starts over hurdles. Battled for a narrow victory on hurdles debut, before bolting up in Listed Juvenile race at Aintree. Was a little flattered that day, as main rival fell at that last, but deserves respect here and will be gaining weight from older rivals.

Queens Cave

Pulled up on first hurdles start after suffering a heart issue. Performed well second time out to push Silver Forever fairly close, before making all to secure cosy victory at Exeter. Made handicap debut at Cheltenham earlier this month and ran well before fading late on. Dropping back in trip should help and soft ground certainly suits.

Silver Forever

Confident front-runner, who beat Queen’s Cave by four lengths on hurdles debut at Chepstow. Then traded victories with Floressa, first beating rival at Newbury, before losing out by six lengths when finishing third in Listed Hurdle at Newbury’s Winter Carnival. Boasts useful form on right-handed tracks and has enough pace to triumph over the minimum distance. The one to beat.

Zero To Hero

Beaten by miles in two NHF races last spring. Uncompetitive in modest flat races since. First start for Sophie Leech, but barely worth mentioning.

Verdict

Marie’s Rock looks a good prospect for Nicky Henderson, who’s a master when it comes to helping young mares improve. Queens Cave should be competitive back over this trip too, but the one I can’t get away from is SILVER FOREVER.

There was no shame what-so-ever in losing out to the very classy Floressa at Newbury, she was simply beaten for finishing pace on fairly quick ground. The softer conditions at Taunton will emphasise Silver Forever’s undoubted stamina and I think she’ll be very hard to pass if allowed to dictate the race from the front.

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