A pretty patchy looking midweek card, the greater sporting interest is probably at Punchestown, but the betting highlight may well be at Wetherby.
The betting for the 2m handicap hurdle is topped by Away For Slates. The theory here is that a switch to the upwardly mobile yard of Dan Skelton will see dramatic improvement, the other side of that ledger is that no improvement was apparent on stable debut. That came after 18 months off, and whilst he may improve, the two week turnaround is just as likely to result in the dreaded bounce factor.
Instead it may be worth risking Reverant Cust from the small stable of Peter Atkinson.
He had a fair first season as a novice, and his seasonal debut here was a fair bit better than the eighth in the formbook.
For starters that looked a better race than this, also he was hampered at a crucial stage when staying on promisingly, and recovered to be finishing nicely at the end, not beaten as far as his placing may imply.
That was a typical small yard seasonal opener, and we can expect some improvement in fitness for that run.
Brian Hughes is probably the best jockey in the North right now and his booking speaks volumes, both that Atkinson sought his services, and that Hughes accepted.
He looks a good bet.
Recommendation: Reverant Cust, (1430 Wetherby), 1pt win, 7/1 Bet365
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