Tony Calvin has a pair to back in Kempton's feature race, the Lanzarote Hurdle, as well as a pair of bonus bets at Warwick from ITV Racing's Saturday selection...
"Chesterfield can race off a 1lb lower mark than when looking heavy odds-on to win that Kempton race, he has soft ground and course form, and this could easily have been a long-term target for him since being bought for 32,000gns at the Bloomfields dispersal sale last April."
Seamus Mullins and 5lb claimer Kevin Jones have had a couple of near-misses in big handicap hurdles this season, but Chesterfield could just get them over the line in front in Kempton's Lanzarote Hurdle at 14:40.
The problem is his price collapsed on Friday afternoon, and he is currently trading at around the 11/1 mark on the exchange, so where do we draw a line in the ground and let him go unbacked?
This horse was 33/1 in a place on Wednesday morning, 20/1 on Thursday, and 16/1 in four places at the start of Friday. So we will come back to the price in a bit but the horse has an undeniably big chance.
We were on Mullins' Song Light at massive prices when he was third in the Greatwood Hurdle in November - he traded at 1.548/15 in the run when cruising between the last two - and Fergall was matched at a low of 2.166/5 and 3.1511/5 when placed at Ascot on his last two starts.
Fergall finished third to Brain Power in his most recent start at a fog-bound Ascot, where we finally saw his new stablemate Chesterfield emerging from the gloom in the final 100 yards, apparently going on really strongly at the finish to take eighth, just one placed behind Modus.
On the bare form, a 1lb drop in the weights was probably justified for that run - he was beaten 15½ lengths, after all - but it was his first start for his new handler after a near two-year absence and it did look as though he was given plenty to do from off the pace that day.
In the circumstances that has to be viewed as a very positive effort, and one which suggests that this 1m4f Flat winner (and an 89-rated one, too, at his best) will be suited by the extra 5f here. Indeed, his trainer had him in the 2m handicap hurdle at the end of the card but has decided to come here over 2m5f.
On his form for John Ferguson two seasons ago you can give him a huge chance.
He won a 19-runner handicap hurdle in the soft at Cheltenham's Open meeting in 2014 and then came here over Christmas in 2014 off an 11lb higher mark and was being produced with what looked like a winning run at the last - he traded at 1.152/13 in-running, so I am sensing a theme here - before crashing out.
He presumably injured himself there, hence his subsequent lengthy absence. But look at that Kempton form, and you will be very tempted to back him.
The winner Clooncaool has won twice since and the short-head runner-up Violet Dancer won the Betfair Hurdle two starts later, as well as his last three chase starts before picking up an injury at the beginning of last year.
They pulled 10 lengths clear of Starluck, who won at Epsom on his next start for good measure, while the fourth Hurricane Hollow, a further five lengths back, also won at Cheltenham on his next outing, for which he went up 9lb.
Chesterfield can race off a 1lb lower mark than when looking heavy odds-on to win that Kempton race, he has soft ground and course form, and this could easily have been a long-term target for him since being bought for 32,000gns at the Bloomfields dispersal sale last April.
I am gutted the big prices have gone but I do think he has a huge chance so I will still suggest a small bet if you can get 12.011/1 or bigger. His Flat form and run-style over hurdles suggests he could even improve for the longer trip, though Thursday's rain-cum-snow was probably not ideal on the stamina issue.
I won't lie. The jockey is a slight concern but he claims 5lb for a reason and it is right that trainers stand by their men (and women) on occasions like this.
There isn't much pace in the race, and Local Show could get an easy lead on the front - Templeross is the only other one who likes to go on, from what I can see - and that makes him interesting at 26.025/1 or bigger. It's all about the price, stupid.
I touched up on his claims in Tuesday's ante-post column on the race and he is undoubtedly of interest now that he is a guaranteed runner, with a possible pace angle, and with Adrian Heskin up.
The 17mm of rain on Thursday would have been very much in his favour given he wants as big a stamina test as possible over this 2m5f trip as all his wins have come on soft ground, the most pertinent being his defeat of the ill-fated Onenightinvienna over 3m here last January.
If he can reproduce that level of form here, he must have a fair chance off 139, 5lb lower than his current chase mark. I appreciate he comes here on the back of a poor run in the Hennessy, but at the price he is worth chancing.
I have been trying to find out why he has been off since late November, without any joy, so let us hope it has been because of something like a wind op. A successful one, obviously.
A double figure bet for the Pertemps qualifier
After the shock news earlier in the week that Kempton may shut as early as 2021 - though there is a long way to go until that happens, and plenty of hoops to be jumped through - it looks like some trainers and owners are already voting with their feet as some the fields are pitiful.
The 30k Listed Chase has attracted just four runners, and nothing much appeals in the handicap chase there either, so over to Warwick we go where ITV are showing four races.
Once again a Listed Chase, this time for 25k, has attracted just seven runners and doesn't appeal as a betting medium, for all it does look a cracking contest.
The Pertemps qualifier at 14:25 is a far more enticing contest from a punting stance, for all it will annoy some that there are only 15 runners and we are playing with only three places. At least it saves the heartache and hope when there are 16 entries, and you sit there waiting for the inevitable non-runner...
I think Barney Dwan is the best handicapped horse in the race back over hurdles but I do worry about him over 3m2f on soft ground - he has plenty of pace - and I am going to side with top-weight Clondaw Cian at 10.09/1 or better.
The argument for him is simple. He won very well in a good time over 2m5f at Cheltenham in November, is still fairly treated off an 8lb higher mark, and I am not worried about the fact that he hasn't run since.
His trainer made the point that he is best when fresh after he won at Cheltenham - and also namechecked a Pertemps qualifier, too - so I'm cool with the two-month break since. Did I just write "cool"? Sorry.
Anyway, like Barney Dwan, his stamina is an unknown. But the fact he is a heavy-ground point winner gives me some encouragement and I just think he is a very progressive seven-year-old well worth chancing.
King's headgear can yield another Success
I don't have a strong opinion in the Grade 2 novices' hurdle at 15:00 but I do in the 3m5f marathon that follows.
The Classic Chase at 15:35 is certainly not short of pace - I counted at least seven of the 20 runners who like to go forward, and others had in the past, too - so I think it is fair to say the 3m5f contest will be as gruelling as ever.
Viva Steve has to be on the top of anyone's short-list and many of the usual suspects also return here - not least last year's winner Russe Blanc and 2014 and 2013 victors Shotgun Paddy and Rigadin De Beauchene - but I like the chances of Sego Success, who actually went off the 7/1 favourite for this race (off a 6lb higher mark) last season.
He got only as far as the second then and he comes here in slightly below-par form in two starts this season, though nothing too poor.
He is now only 1lb higher than when winning at Doncaster by five lengths last season and Alan King has stuck first-time blinkers on him. And King has few equals when it comes to successfully introducing headgear.
Since 2007, he is 20 from 121 in first-time blinkers - and nine from 37 with a hood - and they are pretty stunning stats. That's the best that I am aware of from a fairly big sample.
He worked the horse in them on Monday morning and apparently they sharpened him up, so back him at 14.013/1 or bigger.
Back Clondaw Cian at 10.09/1 or bigger in the 14:25 at Warwick
Back Chesterfield at 12.011/1 or bigger in the 14:40 at Kempton
Back Local Show at 26.025/1 or bigger in the 14:40 at Kempton
Back Sego Success at 14.013/1 or bigger in the 15:35 at Warwick