Rhys Williams has analysed Wednesday's racing and has two selections at Uttoxeter.
"His promising bumper debut came on good ground and a return to better ground should also help his cause."
Back to the well after first fence unseat
Three County's was a selection in this column last week but he didn't get any further than the first fence, reaching for it a little and unseating Tabitha Worsley.
Although part of the case for his chance that day was the drop back to 2m4f, I can't let him go unbacked at a huge price now he's returning to racing over 3m.
He shaped with promise on his first start for Max Young at Ffos Las off a 1lb higher mark than he races off today. After losing his place early on due to being wide on the bend, he made headway going down the back straight on the first circuit to track the leaders. He continued in a prominent position and was second leaving the back straight on the final circuit. He looked to be starting to weaken when coming down at 4 out.
It may be that he travels well again for a long way before not seeing out the trip and he's been a weak finisher in the past, even over shorter trips, but he ran well off a 17lb higher mark on his final start for Olly Murphy so and it could be that he needed the run on his first start for Young.
The likes of That's Me and Go On Chez have the potential to be better than their ratings, particularly the latter if his mind is focused on the job in hand, but in a race of this quality Three County's shouldn't be such a big price and any 25/1 or bigger appeals.
Wind op and tongue tie to spark a revival
Quite how the handicapper has come up with a rating of 73 for Chat To Charlie is anyone's guess. On his three starts over hurdles, he's been pulled up, beaten 140 lengths when last of six and beaten 96 lengths when last of seven finishers and hasn't finished any closer than 48 lengths behind a rival.
Handicapping a horse based on three such runs leaves far greater potential for the rating to either overrate or underrate a horse's ability as there's no substance to the case for awarding that rating. In this case, I'm hoping it's the latter as Chat To Charlie has shown signs that he could be better than that.
On his debut in a bumper back in March 2019, he was beaten a length in a bumper at Huntingdon. While the winner hasn't done too much over hurdles since, the third and fourth ended up rated 120+ over hurdles while the fifth finished second to Calva d'Auge on his hurdling debut.
It's been sharply downhill for Chat To Charlie since then. He was beaten 34 lengths on his next start in a bumper on soft ground at Ffos Las and was pulled up on hurdling debut at this track on soft ground in November 2019.
After 550 days off the track, he returned at Fakenham and finished a tailed off last and filled that same position on his most recent start at Worcester but he did show a bit of promise.
Handy from the off, he frequently swapped positions with Meep Meep Mag for the lead and second place and he turned out of the back straight on the final circuit in second. Once pushed along turning the bend, he found nothing and stopped quickly, eventually being beaten 96 lengths.
Since that run, Chat To Charlie has had a wind op and a tongue tie goes on for the first time today. His promising bumper debut came on good ground and a return to better ground should also help his cause.
It may be that Chat To Charlie has a big problem that caused the long absence and means that he stops very quickly under pressure but I thought he travelled well enough for long enough against some decent novice hurdlers for this time of year at Worcester to think he's got more ability than his rating of 73. Any 7/1 or bigger appeals.
RHYS' PROFIT/LOSS 2021
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