Saturday live TV tips – ITV Racing best bets at Wetherby, Ascot and Down Royal
Saturday live TV tips for the day’s ITV Racing
Saturday brings a bumper crop of televised horse racing action with coverage of three meetings across the UK and Ireland where there is some top-class jumps racing going to post and our tipping team pick out their Saturday live TV tips for the day’s programme.
With ten live TV races on ITV Racing on Saturday there is plenty of classy action taking place for armchair punters to ponder over and the jumps season cranks up a gear with the Charlie Hall Chase spearheading five races to be shown from Wetherby.
Elsewhere Ascot contributes four races to the Saturday schedule headed by the Grade Three London Gold Cup; while we also head to Ireland and Down Royal for the Grade One Champion Chase to bring up the perfect ten race schedule.
Our tipping team has looked over all ten of the day’s races to pick out their Saturday live TV tips while Ed Chamberlain and the team will also be on hand with their expert racing tips, insights and post-race analysis for all the day’s action.
SATURDAY LIVE TV TIPS – ITV RACING BEST BETS AT WETHERBY, ASCOT & DOWN ROYAL
1:20 Wetherby – bet365 Handicap Chase (Challenger Middle Distance Chase Series Qualifier) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-125) 2m3½f
Taking a chance on his fitness after almost seven months off it may pay to side with REVELS HILL who was somewhat inconsistent over hurdles last term but did round off the season with a win at Warwick over Faint Hope and now tackling fences there could be more to come from Harry Fry’s charge.
The Mahler gelding has experience between the flags which ought to stand him in good stead switching to this discipline and the prospect of softer ground shouldn’t present too much of an issue if there’s rain about so he looks to hold good claims here.
His stable has been in decent form thus far and the yard doesn’t do too badly at this venue so a big run wouldn’t come as a surprise assuming he’s fit to go at the first time of asking.
1:35 Ascot – Ascot Underwriting Chase (A Novices’ Limited Handicap) (GBB Race) Cl3 (4yo+) 2m3f
All of these runners have a bit to prove at present but it may be worth chancing SOLO on his first try over fences and Paul Nicholls’ charge could regain the winning thread with the yard in decent fettle.
The Kapgarde gelding won the Grade Two Adonis Hurdle at Kempton for the Ditcheat handler following his move from France but he’s failed to live up to expectations since over the smaller obstacles and was disappointing when last seen at Sandown in April where he beat only two home.
He’s since had wind surgery ahead of this reappearance which sees him switch to chasing and he could do better if taking to this discipline although he’s certainly bred for chasing and he’s no forlorn hope here.
1:55 Wetherby – bet365 Mares’ Hurdle (Listed Race) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m
This could be run at a decent clip which could bring MOLLY OLLYS WISHES’ stamina into play and Dan Skelton’s charge can make a winning reappearance here.
The Black Sam Bellamy mare proved to be progressive last term, winning three times at up to three miles including in a Warwick Listed event prior to tackling the Grade Two National Spirit Hurdle at Fontwell on his final start, finishing third.
While she could conceivably prove vulnerable contesting over two miles on her reappearance she isn’t one to hang about and may well set out to make the most of her stamina where she could prove hard to peg back.
2:10 Ascot – Bateaux London Handicap Hurdle (Listed Race) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 1m7½f
SOARING GLORY beat Bravemansgame when making a winning return to action last October on his first try over hurdles and Jonjo O’Neill’s charge has proved to be very smart since, finishing third to My Drogo at this venue in December and running out an impressive winner of the Betfair Hurdle before disappointing in the Supreme Novice’s Hurdle where he was a well-beaten fourth.
Those runs leave him with plenty of weight to carry into this race but his form is solid and he’ll appreciate dropping back into a Listed contest for his return where the Fame And Glory gelding could get back to winning ways with the cheekpieces he wore at Cheltenham dispensed with here.
The form of the Betfair Hurdle has worked out pretty well and given he’s gone well fresh in the past he ought to make his presence felt back at this venue where he won a bumper and also twice made the frame.
2:30 Wetherby – bet365 Hurdle (Grade 2) (Registered As The West Yorkshire Hurdle) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 3m
A return to form by Paisley Park wouldn’t be a surprise but at nine-years old his powers might be on the decline and it might be worth chancing on THOMAS DARBY to build on his third-place finish in the Aintree Stayers’ Hurdle when last seen.
Olly Murphy’s charge hasn’t won since scoring at Ascot last January in the Holloway’s Hurdle but he’s been lightly raced since and finished a close third at Kempton last Christmas behind Mcfabulous before disappointing at the Cheltenham Festival. However he bounced back at Aintree on his first try over three miles and a repeat of that would certainly put him in the mix.
He was only beaten around four lengths by Thyme Hill and Roksana and there could be more to come from him over this trip for all he is temperamental and does have two ways of running and much will depend on his mood.
However if he arrives here on top of his game then he could go close in what is an interesting renewal of this Grade Two prize.
2:45 Ascot – Byrne Group Handicap Chase (Listed Race) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+ 0-150) 2m1f
AMOOLA GOLD might be worth chancing on his reappearance having taken this race twelve months ago and while much higher in the weights this time he looks progressive and could have further improvement to come.
Dan Skelton’s charge had had the benefit of a run prior to tackling this contest, but he was also successful in that seasonal debut at Wetherby and subsequent runs following his defeat of Ibleo in this contest saw him finish runner-up behind good sorts in First Flow and Sky Pirate respectively before running disappointingly in the Grand Annual on his last start although he did have an excuse for that effort having lost a shoe.
This mark is certainly going to demand plenty from him in a competitive renewal of this event if he has designs to follow up and the handicapper might have nailed him now; but he goes well for Bridget Andrews who was aboard twelve months ago and it wouldn’t come as a big shock if he were to get involved again.
2:50 Down Royal – Ladbrokes Champion Chase (Grade 1) (5yo+) 3m
Cheltenham Gold Cup hero MINELLA INDO ought to be hard to beat here and Henry De Bromhead’s charge can make a winning reappearance.
The Beat Hollow gelding won first time up twelve months ago when scoring easily at Wexford and he followed up that victory by taking a Grade Two at Navan in November before falling in the Savills Chase and disappointing in the Irish Gold Cup prior to bouncing back with a defeat of more fancied stablemate A Plus Tard in the Cheltenham Festival feature.
A clear form pick with 8lbs in hand on official ratings he looks hard to oppose making his return from more than seven months off and if he were to pick up where he left off last term then he should prove too good for these rivals.
3:05 Wetherby – bet365 Charlie Hall Chase (Grade 2) (GBB Race) Cl1 (5yo+) 3m
SHAN BLUE can get back on the up with improvement expected this term following an excellent first season over fences as a novice.
Dan Skelton’s charge won his first three starts over fences which includes a course and distance victory before readily landing the Grade One Kauto Star Novices’ Chase over Christmas at Kempton. He looked the winner subsequenty at Sandown before being outstayed on heavy ground and having gone off like a scalded cat at the Cheltenham Festival where he finished a poor fifth in the Marsh he may have found those exertions had left a mark when runner-up to Chantry House at Aintree on his final start.
Despite his form dipping in the latter part of the season he has plenty of scope to improve over fences this season and he’s gone well fresh in the past. His bold-jumping will be an asset around here and if Dan Skelton gets his fractions right then he could kick off the new campaign with a victory.
3:20 Ascot – Bateaux London Gold Cup Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 3m
JOHNBB raced just three times last term, winning on his seasonal debut at Wetherby and he was in the process of running well there next time when falling two out. However he banished that run with an excellent second to Happygolucky at Aintree in April in the Grade Three Betway Chase and the lightly-raced sort can continue to improve.
The Stowaway gelding was only beaten around three lengths on that occasion, perhaps just feeling his exertions at the business end having always raced prominently and this slightly shorter trip ought to be in his favour.
Thorougly unexposed as a staying chaser he resumes this season 3lbs higher than when last seen, but he does have scope to improve and while this is competitive he can give a good account.
3:40 Wetherby – bet365 Handicap Hurdle Cl3 (3yo+ 0-130) 2m3½f
Donald McCain has his string in excellent form and MACKENBERG could be the one to side with here with the prospect of improvement to come on his handicap bow.
The Jukebox Jury gelding won first time up last season when making a successful hurdles debut at Carlisle and he’s only once since finished out of the first three where he’s managed to record two more wins at Newcastle in a jumpers’ bumper and when last seen running out an easy winner of a Kempton novice’ contest.
His opening mark of 127 is certainly no gimmie in a competitive contest but Theo Gillard can claim a handy 5lbs and with the potential to improve he ought to make his presence felt for his in-form stable.