ITV Racing Saturday Preview
DRF KICKS OFF ON SATURDAY! ITV also have action covered from Sandown, Musselburgh and Wetherby on an action packed afternoon. Previews for all 11 races.
Make sure you scroll right down to the bottom to see any multiples we are placing. These can be added direct to your bet365 bet slip.
ITV Racing Saturday Preview
1.15 Sandown Virgin Bet Handicap Chase (Class 2) 1m71/2f
1.35 Leopardstown Racing TV “12 Euros Per Month This Weekend Only” Spring Juvenile Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m
1.50 Sandown Virgin Bet Contenders Hurdle (Listed Race) (Class 1) 2m
2.05 Musselburgh bet365 Auld Yin Conditional Jockeys’ Veterans’ Handicap Chase (Veterans’ Chase Series Qualifier) (Class 3) 2m6f
2.20 Sandown Virgin Bet Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase (Grade 1) (Class 1) 2m4f
2.30 Wetherby William Hill Towton Novices’ Chase (Grade 2) (Class 1) 3m
2.40 Musselburgh bet365 Scottish County Handicap Hurdle (Class 2) 1m71/2f
2.55 Sandown Virgin Bet Heroes Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) (Class 1) 2m71/2f
3.15 Leopardstown Paddy Power Irish Gold Cup (Grade 1) 3m1/2f
3.30 Sandown Virgin Bet Masters Handicap Chase (Class 2) 3m
3.45 Musselburgh bet365 Edinburgh National Handicap Chase (Class 2) 3m71/2f
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I’m looking forward to seeing GUNSIGHT RIDGE out again for Olly Murphy and it’s no surprise to see him as favourite despite how competitive this looks. He finished out his race so well over course and distance last month suggesting he may have a fair bit to come at this trip. The ground will be faster on Saturday but he seems fairly versatile and is the one to beat despite a 5lb rise.
Frero Banbou won well on heavy ground at Lingfield last time out really staying on well. He will be a big danger if finishing out his race the same. The other one who is interesting now back at 2 miles is Tamaroc Du Mathan but the stable form has to be a slight concern. Rikoboy was a good second on return last month and will strip fitter here.
Really looking forward to seeing FIL DOR at Leopardstown on Saturday and I think he can remain unbeaten. Judging by the way he put away Lunar Power over track and trip on Boxing Day he is not only the one to beat here but also in the Triumph at the Festival next month. He really impressed with how quickly he went clear and is clearly a very exciting horse. He should go up through the gears again and I’ll be surprised if he’s beaten.
Vauban is the danger in the Rich Ricci silks and he is interesting because his form ties in with a stablemate to the selection Pied Piper who backed that up winning so impressively at Cheltenham. He only went down half a length and is sure to improve but my gut feeling is the fav is a bit of a freak and he might always be up against it here.
This is a Listed race in name only with the majority of the field using it as a stepping stone to bigger races later in the season. It is wide open with all of these beating each other in recent meetings. SONG FOR SOMEONE has some of the best numbers given that he gives weight away in plenty of his races. He meets Guard Your Dreams on better terms than his narrow defeat last time and should reverse that form now.
Goshen ran his best race for quite a while when a close third behind Brewin’upastorm at Lingfield last time. If he can replicate that at this shorter trip on faster ground he is a danger but still has a bit to prove and is short enough in the betting. Global Citizen is likely to get loose on the lead but may find it tough staying there against these.
These Veteran races are always tough to call so a narrow vote goes to the 10yo COOL MIX for Iain Jardine. He is probably too consistent for his own good but the handicapper is at least relenting a bit and he has come down another 3lb since that third to Kalooki at Doncaster. This is a bit easier and if he can build on that performance he will certainly have a say in the finish with Alan Doyle claiming a handy 3lb too.
Calipso Collonges is favourite at the time of writing for Olly Murphy and he ended his losing run on first start following a wind op at Kelso on return. He was a solid third in the Tommy Whittler at Haydock last time and looks the biggest danger to the selection. Of the rest Glen Forsa was better than the bare result last time and might figure.
This Scilly Isles is always a top race and we could have a star in L’HOMME PRESSE who we were on last time at Cheltenham when winning a good race by 10 lengths. He is 3 from 3 over fences and still looks to have so much to come. This is no given but if he is as good as connections are hoping he should win this before potentially being targeted at the Festival or some big spring prizes.
Pic D’Orhy is the clear danger based on his recent efforts over fences with two good wins either side of a fall. He is rated the best in the race but I feel the selection could improve past him. Mister Coffey hasn’t shaped badly in two starts over fences and only went down narrowly at Kempton but this is definitely tougher again.
This does look AHOY SENOR‘s to lose after two great performances over fences on his last 2 runs. He routed a field at Newbury before chasing home the classy Bravemansgame at Kempton on Boxing Day. This looks a great opportunity to bounce back and he will take some beating under likely positive tactics. His jumping should continue to improve as he gains experience.
Saint Palais is improving with every run over fences but still has a bit to find to trouble the selection. He will be a danger though alongside Ashtown Lad if at his best. He bumped into Mint Condition at Haydock and while that form has to be respected this looks a couple of notches above that.
Hard to split most of these but the one I’ve come down on is FIVEANDTWENTY for Donald McCain. She landed a C&D hat-trick this time last year and has been lightly raced since. She was disappointing at Wetherby but following a wind op did shape better over track and trip last time and down another 4lb can get competitive here. She will strip fitter and has more going for her than most.
Wild Max is feared but like I’ve said before the stable form just worries me a bit at the moment. He was pulled up over fences at Ludlow but given time since should bounce back reverting to hurdles here. Glory And Honour is talented but doesn’t always put it all in. If he builds on that Cheltenham fifth he could also play a hand.
This looks a wide open handicap with the maximum of 18 set to run. I am going to have two here at good each way prices starting with JESUITIQUE who won well at Haydock last time over 3 miles. He started this season with form of 1121 and even with a 10lb rise may have more to come at this trip. Cillin Leonard keeps the ride and has developed a good partnership with him this season.
The other one I quite like is DANS LE VENT who like the first selection has shown good form at this trip but is still unexposed over it and I think he will run a big race for the Evan Williams yard. Green Book and Ree Okka are the dangers as they could really step forward based on how unexposed they could be but I like my two at double their prices.
Hard to look past last year’s winner KEMBOY for Willie Mullins. The yard have won 2 of the last 3 runnings and he ran right up to form beaten less than a length to Galvin in the Savills Chase here last month. He will be ridden forward again under Townend and if he gets into a nice rhythm early will be a danger to all. This is very much his Gold Cup whereas one or two of the others will have one eye on Cheltenham next month.
Frodon beat both Minella Indo and Delta Work in the Champion Chase at Down Royal at the start of the season and while he finished a tired horse in the King George could get seriously competitive here. He does need to bounce back though and given the selection is proven around here that sways the balance.
Very open handicap chase with DEISE ABA on a hat-trick in the race. He looked to be in good form before pulling up over a longer trip at Chepstow last time on soft ground. This better ground should see him bounce back and if he does the 7/1 on offer at the time of writing looks too big against some of these. That nose second to Highland Hunter (runs in the next at Musselburgh) was a very good effort.
This race is deeper than some of the renewals the selection has won so it will be tough with Farinet looking a big danger. He will likely relish the step up to 3 miles and looks like he has plenty more to offer. The favourite at the time of writing Five Star Getaway will be thereabouts but could find 1/2 too good.
I really like the chances of HIGHLAND HUNTER in the lucky last at Musselburgh on Saturday. Hopefully Paul Nicholls has had a couple of winners as he has been out of form. This horse showed a great attitude to beat Deise Aba at Sandown before bumping into Iwilldoit in the Welsh Grand National. He looks all about stamina so this extreme trip should suit and off the same mark is going to go close.
The danger looks to be The Wolf for Olly Murphy. He was a good second to Full Back at Cheltenham and looks a threat if replicating that sort of form here. Mighty Thunder was pulled up in the Welsh Grand National but if bouncing back could also have a say. Step Back needs to leave that reappearance run behind to get competitive.