Saturday 31 August horse racing tips – Watson’s 3/1 chance a Force to be reckoned with at Chelmsford
Brian Healy gives his race-by-race selections and best bets for all of Saturday’s scheduled UK and Irish racemeetings.
Saturday’s UK and Irish horse racing fixture list takes in eight meetings which includes the Group Three Solario Stakes and the Group Three Atalanta Stakes at Sandown.
Elsewhere, at Beverley it is the latest renewal of the competitive Beverley Bullet; while further afternoon flat racing action on turf comes from Chester, and also Down Royal in Ireland.
Wolverhampton race on their all-weather surface on Saturday afternoon, while there is also afternoon jumps racing at Newton Abbot.
Completing Saturday’s fixture list are evening all-weather fixtures at Lingfield and Chelmsford on their respective polytrack surfaces.
Chester (flat) – 1.35 – 5.05pm (7 races)
Down Royal (flat) – 1.40 – 5.10pm (7 races)
Sandown (flat) – 1.50 – 5.20pm (7 races)
Newton Abbot (jumps) – 1.55 – 5.25pm (7 races)
Beverley (flat) – 2.05 – 5.35pm (7 races)
Wolverhampton (flat, aw) – 2.20 – 5.50pm (7 races)
Lingfield (flat, aw) – 4.20 – 7.30pm (7 races)
Chelmsford (flat, aw) – 5.40 – 8.45pm (7 races)
(2.10) The smart OH THIS IS US (5/2, Ladbrokes) won this race twelve months ago from a 3lbs higher mark, and Richard Hannon’s charge is chanced to get back to winning ways here.
The Acclamation entire has been kept busy throughout the year and will be making his 13th start of the campaign when he lines up. He has won twice this term, both at Lingfield on the all-weather, but he has been largely consistent on turf in Listed and Group company, and his last outing at Goodwood is best ignored.
That was a handicap, and he was on the wrong end of a nightmare run to eventually only finish ninth and he is better than he was able to show having found himself trapped on the inside.
It could be worth giving him another chance, and no surprise if he were to prove much more competitive this time around from a fair draw.
(2.45) OUTBOX (13/8, Bet365) has done little wrong in his last couple of outings, bouncing back from a lesser effort at Newmarket on the July Course in July behind King’s Advice to make that same rival pull out all the stops next time at Goodwood where he was just outbattled and went down by a neck.
That run possibly just took the edge off him, and he could only finish third behind Kelly’s Dino in first-time cheekpieces back at Newmarket next time, and given a couple of weeks off since he could do better having had a breather.
His early-season runner-up effort in Listed company in France gives him solid claims and Simon Crisford’s Frankel gelding ought to appreciate a return to this longer trip. With the headgear retained he could find some further measure of improvement to get back to winning ways, and no surprise to see him going close here.
1.35 – Berkshire Rocco
2.10 – Oh This Is Us
2.45 – Outbox
3.20 – Dream Kart
3.55 – Angel Alexander
4.30 – Wild Edric
5.05 – Celestial Force
(2.50) NATURAL POWER (7/4, Coral) has shown some ability in both her starts to date, finishing third at Leopardstown on debut before going one better at Galway in August, and Diane Love’s charge can get off the mark at the third attempt.
The Slade Power colt was denied by just under two lengths latest behind Raven’s Cry, unable to match the winner’s finishing effort. However, that form has since been boosted by both the winner and third winning again since, and with the potential for further improvement to come she can open her account now.
(5.10) MALBAS (6/4, Bet365) found some improvement to go close two starts back at Leopardstown in June, and Denis Hogan’s charge duly confirmed that improvement when successful at Bellewstown three days ago where the Mukhadram gelding ran out a four lengths’ winner over Easter Orchid.
On that evidence, a 6lbs penalty for this latest assignment which sees him quickly turned out could remain workable and he can follow up that win if those exertions haven’t left a mark although he takes on a field of rivals who mostly have a bit to prove.
1.40 – Lady Penelope
2.15 – Pulse Of Shanghai
2.50 – Natural Power
3.25 – Joupe
4.00 – Mallacoota
4.35 – Universal Focus
5.10 – Malbas
5.45 – Linger
(2.25) COUNTRY (11/4, William Hill) is going from strength to strength, and William Haggas’ charge can add to his winning run here.
The Dubawi gelding wasn’t unfancied for a recent Glorious Goodwood contest but ultimately didn’t run; but the three-time winner can continue to find improvement on the back of his most recent defeat of Cardano at Redcar earlier in the month where he ran out a half-length winner.
First-time cheekpieces were worn on that occasion, and he appeared to win readily over a decent field of rivals where his mark of 88 perhaps underestimated him on that occasion.
The handicapper has hit him with a 5lbs rise in the weights as a consequence, but there is a strong suspicion he has further improvement to offer and every chance he can continue his upward curve to strike again.
(3.35) VISINARI (5/1, Paddy Power) was very much a talking horse ahead of her recent run in the Group Two Vintage Stakes at Glorious Goodwood last month, and Mark Johnston’s charge can get back on the winning trail here having proven no match for Pinatubo on that occasion.
A debut winner on the Newmarket July Course, the Dark Angel colt was subsequently only beaten a neck behind Royal Lytham and Platinum Star when contesting the Group Two July Stakes on her next outing where she was only gunned down late.
She was slightly disappointing at Goodwood, making most but weakening once headed although he did manage to reverse places with Platinum Star who has since won at Listed level. As a consequence, she has to prove she gets this seven furlongs, but this is a slightly easier assignment than her recent Group Two outings, and it wouldn’t come as a huge surprise to see her bounce back to winning form here.
1.50 – Daschas
2.25 – Country
3.00 – Jubiloso
3.35 – Visinari
4.10 – Moolhim
4.45 – Poetic Force
5.20 – Dubai Instinct
(2.30) COURT DUTY (5/1, Bet365) saw his hat-trick bid falter with a bad round of jumping at MArket Rasen latest, but John Flint’s charge could be worth chancing to bounce back here.
The Court Cave gelding had won over hurdles last June, but he had looked a fairly progressive and consistent chaser having switched to the larger obstacles in October. Following some solid runs in defeat, he opened his account at Uttoxeter and then followed up at this venue in July before crashing out latest where he paid the price for mistakes.
Despite that mishap, he could be worth chancing here to return to winning ways from the same mark, and the booking of champion jockey Richard Johnson catches the eye so a big run wouldn’t come as a surprise assuming he’s none the worse for that tumble.
(3.05) INNOCENT TOUCH (4/1, William Hill) returns to timber having not looked entirely happy over the larger obstacles, and Henry Daly’s charge can bounce back here.
The Intense Focus gelding has finished third on all three chase starts this term, but he was a regular winner over hurdles last term, and he should appreciate the return to the smaller obstacles despite falling on his last hurdles run at Cheltenham in April.
However, he is 1lb lower here than when last scoring over hurdles at Wetherby last term, and he is fancied to make a winning return to this discipline.
1.55 – Dorking Boy
2.30 – Court Duty
3.05 – Innocent Touch
3.40 – Tidal Watch
4.15 – Stand By Me
4.50 – Game Line
5.25 – Chilli Romance
(2.05) DESERT ICON (11/4, Ladbrokes) can get back on the scoresheet having won at Salisbury in June with a defeat of Kiefer, and William Haggas’ charge has been set a couple of stiff tasks since.
The Sea The Stars colt had also won at Pontefract earlier in the campaign, and he ran better than the bare result despite only finishing eighth behind Sir Ron Priestley at Goodwood in July where he met with plenty of trouble in running.
However, he bounced back from that effort to find only Waldstern too good next time on the July Course at Newmarket, beaten just over two lengths, and a repeat of that effort should put him firmly in the frame again.
The handicapper has pushed him up 4lbs for that run which will demand more, but he remains a potentially progressive sort who could still have further improvement to come. While his sole win to date came over further, he should be suited by this stiff track, and he can go close under Danny Tudhope.
(2.40) FREYJA (15/8, Bet365) made a positive start to her career when finding only one too good on debut at Salisbury earlier in the month, and with that run under her belt Mark Johnston’s charge can go one better.
The Gleneagles filly finished just one length behind Elegant Erin, helping to force the pace throughout and perhaps just fading in the soft ground towards the end.
She ought to have learnt plenty for the outing, and with the potential to improve on the back of that experience and with better ground here then she can build on that first outing to get off the mark at the second attempt.
2.05 – Desert Icon
2.40 – Freyja
3.15 – Judicial
3.50 – Atyaaf
4.25 – Red Seeker
5.00 – Montatham
5.35 – Hammy End
(2.55) CASANOVA (Evens, Bet365) wasn’t able to build on a hugely promising runner-up effort at Epsom two starts ago when narrowly beaten behind the smart Le Don De Vie; but John Gosden’s charge is given another chance to build on that promise.
The Frankel gelding looked to have a good opportunity to get off the mark latest at Beverley, but a poor draw didn’t help his chances and he trailed in fifth of the twelve runners who went to post.
Given he’s been off the track since, all was possibly not well; but the winner and fourth horses home have both racked up a pair of wins since, and if he were to reproduce the form of his earlier Epsom outing then he could take some stopping on his return to action.
(5.15) STAGEHAND (7/2, Paddy Power) found only the smart Duneflower too good on debut at Newcastle last October, after which Charlie Hills’ charge struggled to get competitive on his return to action behind Maqsad at Newmarket in April.
The Kodiac filly might have been amiss on that occasion however, and she showed more of what she was capable of when winning at Ripon in July on her reappearance from three months off.
Although she could only finish third at the same venue next time on her handicap debut, the run possibly came too soon and she is given another chance to build on the promise she had shown earlier with this step up in trip likely to be in her favour.
2.20 – Steal The Scene
2.55 – Casanova
3.30 – Baladio
4.05 – Noble Prospector
4.40 – Probability
5.15 – Stagehand
5.50 – Twilighting
(4.55) LUCANDER (10/3, Ladbrokes) stepped up on his debut fifth at this venue in July to open his account next time out at Windsor, and Ralph Beckett’s charge can find further improvement for the experience to strike again.
The Footstepsinthesand gelding had a neck to spare at the line over Berkshire Savvy, finding plenty but giving the impression there was more in the locker.
The runner-up from that race has won since to give the form a boost, while both the fourth and fifth horses home finished runner-up on their next starts. He has to give away weight all round to this field of rivals, but with the potential to further improve he gets the vote to come on top and add a second win to his tally.
(6.00) YVETTE (6/4, William Hill) steps up markedly in trip here, and the Le Havre filly could be another typical Sir Mark Prescott improver.
The yard has won this race for the past two years, and the Le Havre filly has so far posted a set of moderate efforts on the all-weather which include here back in January. However he ran better for fifth last time out at Newcastle on his handicap debut over ten furlongs, and he can show further improvement now stepping up to two miles.
First-time cheekpieces are deployed and Luke Morris takes the reins so a big run could be in the offing for this one who is bred to appreciate a stiff test.
4.20 – Imperial Act
4.55 – Lucander
5.30 – Simply Silca
6.00 – Yvette
6.30 – Scentasia
7.00 – Dreamweaver
7.30 – Quemonda
(6.15) EMTEN (11/4, William Hill) was a debut scorer at Windsor back in April, beating Top Buck, and Jamie Osborne’s charge lost no caste in defeat when finishing around four lengths’ fifth in the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot prior to her run in the Weatherbys Super Sprint at Newbury.
The Bungle Inthejungle filly never got competitive in that contest, but she takes a marked drop in class for this latest outing, and the form of her earlier Ascot performance is the best on offer in this contest.
A repeat of that effort will put her firmly in the mix here, and if handling the switch to polytrack she can get back to winning ways.
(6.45) X FORCE (3/1, Paddy Power) has made the frame in all three starts to date, including winning at the third attempt when scoring at Wolverhampton in July where the Bungle Inthejungle gelding ran out a comfortable winner.
Both previous outings had yielded runner-up efforts at Lingfield and Chepstow respectively, and Archie Watson’s charge can continue to improve switching to a nursery where an opening mark of 80 doesn’t look harsh.
With the potential to do better, he can find another jolt of progress to strike again under title-chasing Oisin Murphy.
5.40 – Gregorian Girl
6.15 – Emten
6.45 – X Force
7.15 – Vale Of Kent
7.45 – Saqqara King
8.15 – Vindicate
8.45 – Shrewdness