Kempton arguably provides the feature event of the day in the historic Lanzarote hurdle. This year’s event looks as tough as ever to call and we prefer to leave that to the bookies.
Warwick features a card highlighted by the long distance “Classic”. With soft ground assured, this marathon slog often throws up a surprise result, but we think the market may be a decent guide this year.
Missed Approach looks like being the likely favourite and his handicapping is a matter of wonder. As a novice last season and then into this year his last three chasing runs have been a runner up in the 4-miler at the Cheltenham festival ( when provisionally rated 145), a fair 8th in the Scottish National off 148, and a very good 6th in the Ladbroke Gold Trophy off 145 last time.
That’s quality form in this context and he can make the drop in class tell, although it is the handicapper’s extraordinary generosity in dropping his mark to just 139 that’s the kicker.
The Pertemps qualifier earlier on the card is a very interesting heat. There are a number of in form contenders but with a mark of mid to high 130s needed to have any chance of making the final, then there should be massive incentive for impressive recent winner Black Ivory to put up a big show.
It was a small race he won at Aintree last time, but as a 6yo he can be expected to be at his most progressive at this trip. A mark of 126 leaves him very well in and with a big winning chance, but needing that extra 10lbs for a fighting chance come March.
Black Ivory, (1425 Warwick), 1pt win, 4/1 generally available
Missed Approach, (1535 Warwick), 1pt win, 9/2 generally available
Black Ivory & Missed Approach, 1pt win double, approx 27/1
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