Another second for Alan yesterday with Virginia Chick at 5/1, today he is looking to get back in the winners enclosure with selections from Plumpton and Chelmsford City...
"looked as if the step up in trip today would suit and shaped as if there is still more in the tank"
Richard Rowe's charge Sir Hubert has run here on 16 of his 20 career starts and won for the first time over two miles last time out, he looked as if the step up in trip today would suit and shaped as if there is still more in the tank. He has certainly been a slow learner but managed to cash in on a lowly mark last time out, and the bottom weight runner could still be ahead of the handicapper.
He only has five competitors in the race and the other fancied runners have more questions to answer for me, Duhallow Lad was a reasonable hurdler but the six-year-old is making his chase debut today and I wouldn't be comfortable taking the 5/2 available, I think he is best watched. Le Coeur Net for Anthony Honeyball finished second behind Sir Hubert at this venue last time out, and that performance didn't exactly strike me that a return to further would be ideal. He may be ridden differently this time though after a failed attempt to steal the race from the front, but ultimately, I think the handicapper may need to intervene before he can go in again.
Manchego won on his second start for Hugo Palmer but then failed to get anywhere near that form again in his next four starts, not finishing better than second last in each of them. He has since moved to Jamie Osborne's yard and ran his first race for his new carers showing some positive signs finishing fifth, beaten four lengths, at Kempton last month. He would have needed that run after being off the track for 115 days and should strip fitter tonight.
The favourite for the race is the 11 runner maiden Rainbow Rebel for Mark Johnston, to be fair he did run well in defeat when third at Lingfield on his latest outing and a drop back in distance should suit based on that evidence but he always seems to find at least one to beat him. Next in the market is David Simcock's charge Nonios, who won over course and distance three starts ago and looks like he has plenty of ability. No doubt he will be charging home at the end of the race but has just arrived too late the last twice. His running style makes him difficult to win with and will need everything to go his way off this top weight if he is to get his head in front again tonight.
With questions to be answered on the two market principles I think it is worth taking a chance on Manchego finding some of that early form and if doing so, off what is a very dangerous mark, he could be far too good for these.
2018 Overall (prior to this week): +4.75 pts
This week so far...
Staked: 6 pts
Returned: 8.5 pts
2017 P&L +53.30pts
2016 P&L +15.23pts