A busy Saturday of UK horse racing action awaits punters and we’ve picked out our Satuday racing best bets and tips at each of the day’s fixtures going to post.
Saturday’s fixture list of horse racing action sees five meetings going to post and plenty of top-class racing awaits with Newbury and Newcastle both on the agenda where it is day two of the Winter Festival at the former venue which includes the Grade Three Ladbrokes Trophy Chase; while at Newcastle there’ll be a glimpse of Cheltenham Festival winner Epatante as he steps out in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle.
In addition to those two top-class fixtures there is also further jumps racing at both Doncaster and Bangor; while Wolverhampton stages an evening all-weather fixture on their tapeta surface under the floodlights.
We’ve looked through each of the day’s fixtures to pick out our Saturday racing best bets and tips. Can we find a few winners?
SATURDAY RACING BEST BETS – TIPS FOR NEWBURY, NEWCASTLE, DONCASTER, BANGOR & WOLVERHAMPTON
12:20 Newcastle – D J Jeffreys Racing Handicap Chase (Northern Lights Middle Distance Chase Series Qualifier) Cl4 (4yo+ 0-120) 2m4f
DO NOT DISTURB went the wrong way following a Kelso hurdles win last October, but Rose Dobbin’s charge turned in a promising first run over fences at Ayr last month and could build on that effort to get back to winning ways here.
Third in an Irish point-to-point the Mahler gelding was beaten around fifteen lengths in that chase debut although he looked in need of the run and wasn’t helped by losing early ground having been hampered by a faller at the third obstacle.
He should be sharper now with that run under his belt while he’s been dropped 2lbs in the ratings and with this quicker ground unlikely to present a problem he can go close given his potential for improvement over fences.
12:40 Newbury – Ladbrokes John Francome Novices’ Chase (Grade 2) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m7½f
KALOOKI made a successful switch to chasing when bolting up over a furlong shorter over this course earlier in the month and Philip Hobbs’ charge can build on that impressive success.
Progressive last term in a light hurdles campaign that saw him win twice he might just have found three miles in heavy ground stretching him when beaten into second behind Ramses De Teillee in the Prestige Hurdle.
Switched to chasing on his return he ran out a twelve lengths’ victor over House Island, overcoming a couple of mistakes to score readily and he was already clear and looking set to go on to win when the favourite exited at the last.
The runner-up has won since to boost the form and likely to have more to offer he can follow up that chase debut win with further success.
12:47 Bangor – Maelor Handicap Chase Cl4 (4yo+ 0-115) 2m1½f
TWOTWOTHREE has shown himself to be a decent chaser, winning twice last term which included over course and distance and Olly Greenall’s charge can get back on the scoresheet here despite giving away weight all round.
The Shantou gelding returned here in September for his seasonal return where he finished a good fourth to Lock’s Corner, beaten around ten lengths but suggesting he’d come on for the run.
That form looks very fair and likely to be sharper for that reappearance he can do better this time having been eased 1lb in the handicap. Also representing a yard in decent form and returning again to this venue which has shown him up well in the past it wouldn’t be a surprise to see a big run forthcoming now.
12:55 Newcastle – Newcastle Flooring “The French Furze” Novices’ Hurdle (GBB Race) Cl2 (4yo+) 2m6f
ASK A HONEYBEE was thought good enough to tackle the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival having previously racked up a hat-trick of wins in that sphere last term and he ran with some credit without ever threatening to score.
Fergal O’Brien’s charge made a successful switch to hurdling on his reappearance at Wetherby in October where the Ask gelding ran out a half-length winner over Ashtown Lad who has gone on to win twice since.
There was better to come despite meeting with defeat next time at Exeter behind Bobhopeornohope who has gone in again since, finding only that rival too strong by two lengths and he can continue to progress to resume winning ways with the better ground unlikely to prove an inconvenience.
1:08 Doncaster – Watch Free Race Replays On attheraces.com Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (GBB Race) Cl4 (4yo+) 2m3½f
Gavin Cromwell sends PRESENTING MEGHAN to contest this prize and the Irish raider can make the journey worthwhile.
The Presenting mare took a couple of runs to get to grips with hurdling but she made no mistake at the third attempt when scoring at Down Royal in August and she’s not been disgraced in her two defeats since where she’s made the frame each time.
Latterly a good second at Navan behind King Alex where she was beaten three lengths and hampered at the last she could have better still to come over timber and from only 1lb higher ought to be capable of making her presence felt in this contest with the drop back in trip unlikely to prove too much of an issue.
2:25 Newbury – Ladbrokes Committed To Safer Gambling Intermediate Hurdle (Listed Race) (A Limited Handicap) Cl1 (4yo+ 0-155) 2m½f
MARIE’S ROCK could well go to the very top this term and Nicky Henderson’s charge defends a perfect record coming into this contest having won all three starts over hurdles last term.
The Milan mare won a Ffos Las bumper back in May last year and she struck twice over hurdles at Haydock and Taunton respectively, latterly taking a Listed mares’ contest with the minimum of fuss from Midnight’s Gift where she tanked through the race and won unextended.
That form perhaps can’t be taken literally given the field only jumped four hurdles due to the low sun, but she could do no more than win as she did and there’s surely more to come from her over timber where she could prove to be a top-class prospect.
Stepping into a handicap for the first time a mark of 141 might underestimate her potential, while she might improve having had wind surgery. Assuming she’s fit to go at the first time of asking then it wouldn’t be a huge shock to see her heavily involved in this contest and she can uphold her perfect record.
2:53 Doncaster – Visit attheraces.com Handicap Hurdle Cl3 (3yo+ 0-135) 2m3½f
TAYZAR could be worth chancing to get back on the winning trail with Ruth Jefferson’s charge having been running well this campaign, chalking up wins at Warwick and Sedgefield and bouncing back from an early exit at Fakenham to go down only by a half-length latest at Newcastle behind Dancewiththewind.
The Kayf Tara gelding kept on well once headed having taken up the running three out, unable to match the front pair late on but it is possible the shorter trip that day might not have entirely suited and he’ll likely be more appreciative of this longer distance.
The handicapper has pushed him up 4lbs for that effort although his rider can offset that rise in the weights with his 3lbs allowance; but he’s placed from this mark in the past over fences so could still have scope to do better and while this is a stronger grade of race he tackles he can continue to make his presence felt if remaining in form.
4:30 Wolverhampton – Ladbrokes Watch Racing Online For Free Novice Stakes Cl5 (2yo) 5f
RADRIZZANI made a decent first impression when successful on debut over course and distance twelve days ago and with that experience likely to bring her on the Kodiac filly is taken to follow up here.
David O’Meara’s charge overcame a troubled start to win a shade readily although she was perhaps helped by the strong pace; but there was a lot to like and she’s likely to get another strong pace to aim at here.
She does have to concede weight all round to this field but she’s open to plenty of improvement on the back of that first effort and ought to prove tough to beat in this latest contest where she can double her tally and maintain her unbeaten record.