Wednesday 11 September horse racing tips – Varian’s 5/1 chance can bounce back to winning form at Doncaster

Roger Varian can get amongst the winners at Doncaster on Wednesday.

Roger Varian can get amongst the winners at Doncaster on Wednesday.

Brian Healy gives his race-by-race selections and best bets for Wednesday’s UK and Irish race-meetings, including the opening day of the St Leger Festival and Doncaster, and day four of the Listowel Harvest Festival meeting.

A cracking day of UK and Irish horse racing action lines up on Wednesday, with the start of the Doncaster St Leger Festival meeting taking centre-stage with Listed action on the card.

There is also flat racing from Carlisle, while Uttoxeter goes over the sticks. Meanwhile, the Listowel Harvest Festival continues into a fourth day with a mixed flat and jumps racing card featuring the Kerry National.

The evening action comes from the Kempton all-weather; while in Ireland there is also a fixture on the beach at Laytown.

Doncaster (flat) – 1.50 – 5.20pm (7 races)
Listowel (mixed) – 1.55 – 5.55pm (8 races)
Uttoxeter (jumps) – 2.05 – 4.55pm (6 races)
Carlisle (flat) – 1.40 – 5.35pm (8 races)
Laytown (beach) – 4.00 – 6.40pm (6 races)
Kempton (flat, aw) – 5.30 – 8.30pm (7 races)


(2.15) RALPHY BOY TWO (6/1, Paddy Power) has shown race by race progress, seemingly appreciating the step up in trip to get off the mark over this course last month with a defeat of We Owen A Dragon by three-parts of a length.

The Gutaifan gelding was making his handicap debut on that occasion, and he seemed to score a shade readily so a subsequent 3lbs rise looks workable.

He did shape as if he needed that test however so this drop back in trip isn’t sure to suit; but the stiff track may help to negate that doubt and he is chanced to follow up.

(3.25) NINJAGO (9/2, Bet365) has been in consistent form this season, making the frame in each of his last six starts which includes a pair of wins, the latter of which came over this course and distance in July

Paul Midgley’s Mount Nelson gelding latterly was denied only by a head back here late last month behind Naples Bay, just ran down late by the winner who was in receipt of plenty of weight.

He had pulled clear of a subsequent winner however, and he is only 2lbs higher here with Paul Mulrennan returning to the saddle so it wouldn’t come as a surprise to see him posting another solid effort here and he can get back on the scoresheet.

1.40 – Hostelry
2.15 – Ralphy Boy Two
2.50 – Naples Bay
3.25 – Ninjago
3.55 – Strawman
4.30 – Redarna
5.05 – Puerto Banus
5.35 – Flower Power


Carlisle are racing on Wednesday.


(3.00) TIS MARVELLOUS (7/4 Coral) is given another chance having been denied any sort of run in the Beverley Bullet recently, and Clive Cox’s charge can go close here.

The Harbour Watch gelding ha been in good heart prior to that run, finding only Cape Byron too strong in the Wokingham at Royal Ascot before running out a ready winner over Open Wide in the Heritage Handicap at the same track in July.

He struck by just over two lengths on that occasion, and he was well-fancied for the Listed feature at Beverley at the end of August where he eventually finished fifth having been denied a clear run when trying to come with his challenge.

It is debatable whether he’d have won in any case, but he likely would have finished closer with a clear run and he can make a bold bid for compensation here.

(4.45) It may be worth chancing on WILLIE JOHN (5/1, Bet365) to bounce back from a lacklustre run behind Addeybb at Ascot back in June where the soft ground may have been against the son of Dansili.

Roger Varian’s charge had run well the time before on better ground behind Elarqam in the Listed Festival Stakes at Goodwood, and a reproduction of that effort could be good enough here back from a three-month break.

A juvenile winner for William Haggas, he also struck on his first outing for his current yard at this venue prior to struggling in a Group Three at Longchamp where he may have been amiss; and he possibly failed to see out twelve furlongs on his reappearance behind Red Verdon here in March.

Given how the form of that Wolferton Stakes has been working out, he could be worth chancing to post a big run here with conditions much more likely to be in his favour than at Ascot last time out, and there is a suspicion he has a big run in him despite his stop-start career to date.

1.50 – Lazuli
2.25 – Ethic
3.00 – Tis Marvellous
3.35 – Dubai Acclaim
4.10 – Litigious
4.45 – Willie John
5.20 – War Whisper


(3.45) DOUBLY CLEVER (10/3, William Hill) rounded off his time with Michael Blake with a win here in June and a runner-up effort at Stratford prior to joining Johnny Farrelly, and the Iffraaj gelding is thriving currently with back-to-back wins at Worcester already in the bag.

The seven-year old latterly ran out a six lengths’ winner over Jimmy Rabbitte, travelling well and asserting, and only needing pushed out to the line with the rest of the field coming home intervals.

That performance hinted at better still to come, and a 7lbs penalty might not be enough of a burden to prevent him from going close again despite this being a stronger race. He is a dual-winner here so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him remaining competitive, and he can bring up the hat-trick.

(4.55) EMBOLE (10/3, Paddy Power) continues to disappoint having lost his way badly, but Dan Skelton’s charge is capable of a big run if somehow able to recapture his best and he is chanced to do so here having been eased further in the weights to a very winnable mark.

The Buck’s Boum gelding was a hurdles winner last February, and he ran a cracker subsequently to finish third behind Dino Velvet in a competitive Ayr handicap having finished in midfield in that year’s Fred Winter Hurdle.

Things have gone awry for him since however, and three runs this term haven’t hinted at any revival of fortunes which includes beating only one home at Bangor latest. But is represents a drop in class, and he could take advantage for all he isn’t one to have maximum faith in.

2.05 – West To Crossgales
2.40 – Champagne Mist
3.15 – Go Another One
3.45 – Doubly Clever
4.20 – Samson
4.55 – Embole


Uttoxeter race on Wednesday


(3.05) ANGEL’S AMY (5/2, Bet365) had been in good form prior to bolting up over this course two days ago, and Joseph Murphy’s charge can quickly follow up under a penalty.

The Dragon Pulse filly had finished runner-up in a trio of starts at Gowran Park; but she stepped up on those performances faced with softer ground to run out an impressive five lengths’ victor over Dedilon at Roscommon in August, and that success was followed up when she ran out a seven lengths’ winner over Mean Fomhair here on Monday.

She has a furlong less to go this time around, but she has shown she acts well in the mud and a 6lbs penalty may not be enough to prevent a follow-up win if this outing doesn’t come too soon after those exertions. However, given the easy manner of her win, she likely has more to come and she could prove a tough nut to crack here.

(5.25) BENRUBEN (9/4, Ladbrokes) developed into a smart chaser last term for Joseph Nicholson having won a Leopardstown bumper in December, and now with Joseph O’Brien the Beneficial gelding can improve again returned to hurdles.

He had cut little ice in a pair of hurdles starts for Paul Nolan, but his subsequent chase exploits saw him finish runner-up in outings at Thurles and Navan behind smart types Ex Patriot and Jetz, and he likely would have won a Listed contest at Thurles in March but for falling at the last when holding a slender advantage.

Given plenty of time to recover, he makes his return from six months off the track here where he tackles hurdles on his reappearance; and assuming he is fully wound up then he could take some beating if translating his useful chase form back over the smaller obstacles.

1.55 – Louisiana
2.25 – Jered Maddox
3.05 – Angel’s Amy
3.40 – Belle Cora
4.15 – Poker Party
4.50 – Darver Star
5.25 – Ben Ruben
5.55 – Shanwalla


(4.30) TYRCONNELL (5/1, Bet365) has a course and distance to his name, winning the corresponding race last September and going on to later post back-to-back wins at Dundalk during the winter months.

Sarah Lynam’s charge has hinted in his past couple of outings that he is coming back into form, latterly beaten less than one length behind Reeking Havoc at Fairyhouse back in July. As such he looks to hold solid claims despite a higher mark as he bids to retain his title here, and the services of good 5lbs claimer Shane Crosse will help.

He is only 1lb higher at the weights than when posting his last Dundalk success, so every chance he can mount a successful defence and strike again here.

(6.10) BLACKLOOKS (5/2, William Hill) ended his time with Ivan Furtado out of sorts, but he has shown up better since joining Joseph O’Brien and the Society Rock gelding can get back on the winning trail.

The four-year old scored his last win at Wolverhampton back in December 2017 and his losing streak now totals 11; but he has gone close for his new yard at the Curragh in August, and he ran better than the bare result when fifth there on his last outing in a big field contest won by Massa Lubrense.

The handicapper has eased him 1lb in the weights, while he has the services of a good amateur rider for this contest who can take off a further 3lbs, and the pair can combine to go close here.

4.00 – Dapper Power
4.30 – Tyrconnell
5.10 – Myth Creation
5.40 – Ticks The Boxes
6.10 – Blacklooks
6.40 – Commander Han

Joseph OBrien

Joseph OBrien can saddle a Laytown winner on Wednesday


(6.30) MOCHALOV (4/1, William Hill) has been in good heart of late, making the frame in his last three outings which includes a win latest at Lingfield where the Denounce gelding ran out a comfortable winner over Miss Icon.

Jane Chapple-Hyam’s charge was suited by the strong pace on that occasion, and it could be a similar story here where he turns out here from 6lbs higher in the weights. However, he could still have better to come, and he is worth sticking with in an open contest to make his presence felt.

(7.30) GREAT BEAR (4/1, Ladbrokes) was a winner at Bath back in May, and while things haven’t gone to plan since for the Dansili colt it may be worth chancing Roger Charlton’s charge to bounce back here.

A debut winner last term on his sole start, scoring at Wolverhampton, he was last seen finishing fourth on his return from a short break at Newmarket behind Dramatic Device where he was beaten almost five lengths having tried to make all.

That race has thrown up a winner since, and he could thrive for this significantly longer trip which ought to suit so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him find some improvement to go close.

5.30 – Kwela
6.00 – Sparkling Diamond
6.30 – Mochalov
7.00 – Strelka
7.30 – Great Bear
8.00 – Militry Decoration
8.30 – Letsbe Avenue