Ante-Post

Antepost Tips: Back Saint over Frodon and a 25/1 pick for the Eider

Frodon
The ever popular Frodon is one of the entries this weekend at Kempton

Alan Dudman stands in for Tony Calvin for this week's ante-post tipping column and makes selections for Saturday at Kempton and Newcastle...


Lingfield's pair of ITV4 races

Dealing with the day-to-day All-Weather (AW) fare for much of the winter and Class 6 races means it's a refreshing change for two excellent Lingfield contests on Saturday in the Hever Sprint Stakes and Winter Derby.

I'll deal with the latter as the headline race at 14:05 and hopefully all nine stand their ground for an each-way option as Lord North looks pretty good as the 4/6 ante-post favourite on the Betfair Sportsbook.

The 7yo is a proper Group 1 horse for John and slim Thady Gosden, and it's a real coup for the track for him to be in this. He's certainly a cut above when I last attended this meeting in 2007 when Gentleman's Deal won.

Do I want to lay him? Absolutely not, he's a Prince Of Wales's Stakes winner and is well clear on the ratings. The Gosdens also have Forest Of Dean and Harrovian for a triple dice chance, but the only horse away from the Gosden massive is Roger Varian's Tyrrhenian Sea at 6/1.

In terms of looks, few would match this striking animal. And while Jane Austen wrote it's not enough to form an attachment on looks alone, the return to the AW is a plus. He is 3-5 on the AW and it should have been four as he got a horror ride when 1/2 at Kempton last March when hemmed in on the rail.

Away from Lord North's 118 rating, the rest are around a similar ballpark figure, and considering he was a close second in the Easter Classic at Newcastle last year, 1/5 of the odds with three places at 6s is something to consider away from such a strong favourite.

Tyrennhian Sea 1280.jpg

Sprinters ready for the Hevers

The Listed Hever Spring Stakes is an altogether more competitive race at 13:30 on Saturday with a 5/2 favourite in Tone The Barone and a field of 11 entered. Those of a certain vintage will remember all the "Hever" horses around Lingfield many years ago.

Stall five has been the best position for this race and provided three winners in the last five renewals.

Last year's scorer One Night Stand is a massive 25/1 and he really attacked them from the front in 2022 with a great ride. His form since is rather bare as he had over 300 days off prior to a comeback run last time out - in which he was stuffed.

I can see Miss Nay Never running a big race, which is hardly the most revealing of statements with a string of wins. But she is such a strong traveller and another that likes to lead.

She was unstoppable at Chelmsford last time in slamming Harb (a decent traveller himself) but it was some performance off a mark of 90 and her record is now 8-12 on the All-Weather.



It could be set up for a closer to snatch a place, and Exalted Angel is consistent with 6f form, but I was very taken with Miss Nay Never. She is progressing fast.

Back Miss Nay Never Saturday 13:30 Lingfield @

3/1

Eider Chase ripe for an each-way play

Saturday's Eider Chase at Newcastle is an altogether different test, and it's certainly more of a punting race with 18 in at the time of writing. It's the only Newcastle race on ITV4 this Saturday.

It's a grueller and a stamina-sapper usually, and while there is a spot of rain forecast for Wednesday, we could be looking at good to soft or even decent ground - which seems unthinkable for Eider fans.

Newcastle jumps snow 1280.jpg

Shanty Alley looks interesting at 25/1 with the four places on the Sportsbook. He was a good novice with plenty of form over 3m.

He is currently 4lb lower from his peak novice performance from 128, but he has bounced back this term with a couple of placed efforts after a break. He hasn't had an arduous campaign by any means with just three starts.

The chaser ran in the Sky Bet Chase last time at Doncaster, and while he was well beaten, his costly error at the first fence always had him on the back foot. He has form on most ground with a wide-margin success on heavy (over 3m) and wins on good and good to soft. I am hoping he is not one to be pulled due to the conditions - whatever they may be.

The extreme 4m2f will be completely new territory for him, but he finished second in Newbury's Mandarin over 3m2f this season with a very prominent ride in brutal conditions.

Back Shanty Alley each-way Saturday 15:25 Newcastle @

25/1

Boothill might scare off a few Pendil rivals

Over at Kempton, the Pendil Novices' Chase has been completely dominated by Paul Nicholls with six wins in the race since 2013 and his latest success last year was Pic D'Ohry.

Solo and Cap Du Mathan were entered up for the champion trainer, at 5/1 and 7/1 respectively on the Tuesday Sportsbook prices.

Harry Fry's Boothill is the 7/4 favourite and the Kingmaker's loss could be Kempton's gain. He is rated 150 and well clear on ratings. These Graded Novice events can go down to a few, and with good ground in the mix, it's a race I can leave alone. That said, I did take the view Cap Du Mathan was a soft ground horse, only for him to come out and win by 17L on good ground last time.

The same comments apply to Dovecote.

Raise a glass to Calvados for Coral Trophy

The Coral Trophy over 3m is the best punting race on the card at Kempton by miles, and while it is wishful thinking to have the 18 declarations in for the race, the presence of Frodon at 12/1 adds plenty of stardust to the handicap. What a performance it will be off top weight and a mark of 161.

The 11yo runs his heart out and, while the legs are getting slightly older against Graded performers, it's easy to see him getting out in front with a carefree and gustsy style of racing under Bryony Frost.

I actually prefer the claims of Nicholls' Saint Calvados here, however, at 7/1 off a mark of 154.

He's a Grade 2 winner and will certainly enjoy the decent ground on offer at Kempton for Saturday and, with Frodon in the race, he'll keep him away from being top weight.

Nicholls has a knack of improving these older chasers from other yards, and he's only had six starts for the Ditcheat team since joining from Harry Whittington.

After winning at Sandown, the King George was mentioned as a possible, and while that was a bit unrealistic, a graded winner in a handicap most certainly isn't.

Nicholls always thought he'd get 3m on decent ground, and his jumping was superb at Sandown. At one stage he held a lofty rating of 167, so he is certainly well treated and it will be interesting to see if Harry Cobden can get a lead in this. He pinched a lead at Sandown but he won't receive those gifts here.

Back Saint Calvados Saturday 15:00 Kempton @

7/1

A win selection at 7/1 will do for me.

Tony Calvin is back with his Saturday Racing column later this week. From me, it's good luck for Saturday.

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