Racing hopefully will pass a morning inspection at Haydock, and in doing so will provide a classic Lancashire mud-fest.
One horse for whom conditions will hold no fears is the Sue Smith trained Hainan who was mightily impressive when grinding his opponents into the mud and running out an easy winner over a heavy ground 3m4f here last time out.
That form is already working out, and an 8lb rise in no way captures the margin of success. This is ostensibly a better race, but so often these long distance chases come down to suitability of conditions, and Danny Cook will know that in Hainan he has a partner who will relish a muddy Haydock. He is close to market leader but still looks massively overpriced- get on !!
Over at Ascot we will be watching the big race with interest, Un de Sceaux should win, but both Speredek and San Benedeto look interesting outsiders.
One horse we have been backing as a lively each way outsider all season, with some place success, is Man Of Plenty. He again has conditions in his favour in the big handicap hurdle, and the slightly longer trip may well help as he has been a bit of a soft finisher at 2 miles.
He is certainly a hard horse to win with, but continues to be a great each way price for a horse who invariably travels well until late in a race.
Hainan, (1515 Haydock), 2pts win, 6/1 Paddy Power
Man Of Plenty, (1425 Ascot), 0.5pts each way, 20/1 Coral
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