Saturday jumps racing tips 8 February – Best bets for Warwick, Uttoxeter, Newbury and Naas

Brian Healy gives his jumps racing tips for Saturday as he assesses the day’s cards at Uttoxeter, Warwick, Newbury and Naas in Ireland.

Saturday’s fixture list of UK and Irish horse racing meetings sees four jumps racing meetings going to post with action over the sticks at Uttoxeter, Warwick, Newbury and Naas in Ireland.

The feature race of the afternoon is the Grade Three Betfair Hurdle, while the Denman Chase also dominates the card at the Berkshire venue. Meanwhile, the Grade Two Kingmaker Chase is the main event at Warwick.

Uttoxeter (jumps) – 12.48 – 4.17pm (7 races)
Warwick (jumps) – 12.55 – 4.25pm (7 races)
Naas (jumps) – 1.05 – 4.32pm (7 races)
Newbury (jumps) – 1.15 – 4.45pm (7 races)

We’ve assessed all of the day’s four jumps racing cards and Brian Healy gives his our Saturday jumps racing tips and best bets for each of the meetings taking place.


1.22 Uttoxeter – INITIATIVE (7/2, Paddy Power)
1.50 Newbury – VERSATILITY (14/1, Ladbrokes, each-way)
1.58 Uttoxeter – JACK VALENTINE (7/4, Boylesports)
2.05 Warwick – NUBE NEGRA (13/8, Unibet)
2.40 Warwick – LEGENDS GOLD (9/2, Bet365)
2.47 Naas – ENTOUCAS (4/7, William Hill)
3.07 Uttoxeter – FLINCK (3/1, William Hill)
3.57 Naas – AIONE (11/10, William Hill)
4.10 Newbury – HIGHEST SUN (3/1, William Hill)


(1.22 Uttoxeter)

INITIATIVE (7/2, Paddy Power) has progressed with each start over hurdles, bettering his finishing position each time and latterly finding only one too strong at Taunton in November. He was beaten less than one length behind Bathsheba Bay on that occasion, run down late and almost bagging a 50/1 shock win.

Richard Price’s charge has to back up that performance but the form of that near miss has been boosted by the race-winner since scoring again at Musselburgh.

Assuming he can run to a similar level as in that last outing or indeed finds some improvement to surpass that effort then he can continue to remain competitive and the Excelebration gelding could open his account here.

(1.58 Uttoxeter)

JACK VALENTINE (7/4, Boylesports) has run to a useful level over hurdles since scoring in a bumper here in November on his first start for Venetia Williams.

The Scorpion gelding has made the frame in all three starts over timber since that win, latterly finishing around ten lengths’ runner-up behind Kid Commando at Plumpton and there could be further improvement to come.

Hugh Nugent takes over in the saddle where his 5lbs claim is valuable and with the potential for better still he could open his account over hurdles on this occasion.

Trainer Venetia Williams

Trainer Venetia Williams can have a winner at Warwick on Saturday.

(3.07 Uttoxeter)

FLINCK (3/1, William Hill) has found improvement over hurdles this term and the lightly-raced Fame And Glory gelding can find further progress to win again.

Philip Hobbs’ charge finished third at Warwick on his reappearance in October behind Aimee De Sivola; but he has since registered wins at that venue and Haydock latterly where he ran out a three lengths’ winner over a subsequent winner.

He won a shade readily that day and the handicapper has taken a dim view of the win with a 12lbs rise. But his young rider can offset 7lbs of that burden while there is the potential for better still to come and he can take another forward step here to land his hat-trick.

12.48 – Daphne Du Clos
1.22 – Initiative
1.58 – Jack Valentine
2.32 – General Girling
3.07 – Flinck
3.42 – Delface
4.17 – Lies About Milan


(2.05 Warwick)

Useful hurdler NUBE NEGRA (13/8, Unibet) showed plenty of useful form over hurdles, but Dan Skelton’s charge has taken his form up a notch since switching to chasing where he has won two of his three starts over the larger obstacles.

The Dink gelding beat Ballymoy over this course and distance on his chase debut in October after which he followed up with an impressive success at Fakenham. He beat Encore Champs that day and he lost no caste in defeat when beaten less than two lengths into second when last seen in the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase by Esprit Du Large.

The front two pulled well clear of the rest and with the potential for further improvement to come as a chaser he could prove tough to beat here.

(2.40 Warwick)

LEGENDS GOLD (9/2, Bet365) steps up in class here, but Rebecca Curtis’ charge has won four of her last five outings and can continue in good heart.

The Gold Well mare latterly returned from a couple of months off the track to dish out a two lengths’ defeat of Ziggy Rose at Ludlow latest despite not jumping with any real fluency. The handicapper has taken no chances however with a 9lbs rise in the weights; but she has the potential for better still to come and she could improve enough to defy her higher rating.

This will demand more but she gives the impression that there’s better to come and she can remain competitive despite this being a tougher grade than she’s used to.

12.55 – Trincomalee
1.30 – Karakoram
2.05 – Nube Negra
2.40 – Legends Gold
3.15 – Two Taffs
3.50 – Mr Love
4.25 – Sizable Sam

Nube Negra at Cheltenham

Nube Negra can win at Warwick on Saturday.


(2.47 Naas)

ENTOUCAS (4/7, William Hill) sets a solid standard and can open his account here.

Joseph O’Brien’s Network gelding chased home Grade One winner Klassical Dream on just his second outing prior to tackling the Chanelle Pharma Novice Hurdle. He cut little ice on that occasion but was possibly amiss and he was absent until making a return to action from nine months off at Down Royal in November.

Third to Envoi Allen in that reappearance, he has finished runner-up on both subsequent outings which includes at Leopardstown on Boxing Day. That form is strong and he probably wouldn’t need to improve too much if at all to make a bold bid.

This looks a decent opportunity for him to open his account and with the potential for better still he could prove a tough nut to crack.

(3.57 Naas)

AIONE (11/10, William Hill) is 2-3 since joining Willie Mullins and the Coastal Path gelding can strike again here.

A Punchestown bumper winner in November, he found Home By The Lee too strong on his first outing over hurdles at Fairyhouse on New Years’ Day. However, that experience wasn’t lost on him and he ran out a comfortable winner when last seen at Gowran Park.

He registered a five lengths’ success over West Cork Wildway, scoring easily, and there likely is more to come from him. This is a deeper race and he has to concede weight all round; but he could prove hard to beat if continuing his progress under the red-hot Paul Townend and he can win again.

1.05 – Beyond The Law
1.37 – Cut The Mustard
2.12 – Aramax
2.47 – Entoucas
3.22 – Killacolla
3.57 – Aione
4.32 – The Caretaker


(1.50 Newbury)

Lightly-raced VERSATILITY (14/1, Ladbrokes, each-way) has taken well to hurdling, opening his account at Warwick on his first attempt having earlier ran a good fourth in a strong bumper contest at this venue.

Nicky Henderson’s charge hasn’t troubled the judge in two successive outings at Kempton and Ascot; but he shaped last time as if he’d benefit from more of a test of stamina.

The Yeats gelding steps up in distance for this latest outing which could unlock some improvement and he could be fairly weighted from this mark so every chance he can post a big run over this longer trip where he can make the frame.

(4.10 Newbury)

HIGHEST SUN (3/1, William Hill) has taken really well to chasing, running solid races in defeat despite being highly tried behind Champ and Pym respectively.

Colin Tizzard’s charge got off the mark in a match with Diablo De Rouhet at Plumpton after which he was probably not suited by a change in tactics at Warwick latest. He’s been dropped 1lb in the weights since that outing and he could bounce back to winning form here granted a more positive ride.

Likely to find this return to a handicap more in his favour then he ought to go well although this is a competitive and open contest. Nevertheless, he should make his presence felt.

1.15 – Chantry House
1.50 – Versatility
2.25 – Altior
3.00 – Native River
3.35 – Oakley
4.10 – Highest Sun
4.45 – Wilde About Oscar

Altior winning the Champion Chase at Cheltenham.

We’re tipping Altior to get back on the winning trail in the Game Spirit Chase.


1.22 Uttoxeter – INITIATIVE (7/2, Paddy Power)
1.50 Newbury – VERSATILITY (14/1, Ladbrokes, each-way)
1.58 Uttoxeter – JACK VALENTINE (7/4, Boylesports)
2.05 Warwick – NUBE NEGRA (13/8, Unibet)
2.40 Warwick – LEGENDS GOLD (9/2, Bet365)
2.47 Naas – ENTOUCAS (4/7, William Hill)
3.07 Uttoxeter – FLINCK (3/1, William Hill)
3.57 Naas – AIONE (11/10, William Hill)
4.10 Newbury – HIGHEST SUN (3/1, William Hill)

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