A Sandown NAP, Next Best and Each-Way from Timeform
Sandown NAP - 13:50 - Back Southoftheborder
Southoftheborder created a good impression when making a successful hurdling debut at this course a few weeks ago, justifying odds-on favouritism with the minimum of fuss. He impressed with the way he went through the race (jumped and travelled well) before quickening clear from two out, ultimately winning by two and a half lengths in ready fashion.
That was his second win from as many starts under Rules having previously won a Ffos Las bumper in March, while he also won his sole outing in Irish points before joining the Nicky Henderson yard.
Henderson has a good record in this Grade 2 having struck in 2014 and 2017 and the unbeaten Southoftheborder has all the hallmarks of one who should be capable of making an impact at this sort of level, very much the type to go on improving now up in trip (bred to stay well).
Sandown Next Best - 14:25 - Back Stay Away Fay
Stay Away Fay returned from seven months off with a determined victory on his chasing debut at Exeter four weeks ago, rallying well on the run-in to win by a length and three-quarters from The Changing Man. That race was run at a muddling gallop and it was to his credit that he was ultimately well on top at the finish despite shaping as if needing more emphasis on stamina.
A useful novice hurdler last season, notably winning the Albert Bartlett at the Cheltenham Festival, Stay Away Fay has all the makings of a smart chaser and he's fancied to build on the promise of his Exeter effort to make it two from two despite meeting the runner-up on 3 lb worse terms.
Sandown Each-Way - 15:00 - Back Huelgoat
Huelgoat showed much-improved form when resuming winning ways at Wincanton last time, impressing with his strength at the finish in a well-run race as he forged clear late on to land the spoils by three lengths.
The manner of that victory suggests Huelgoat was full value for an 8 lb rise in the weights, while the step up to three miles shouldn't be an issue, either. In fact, it could be making of him and he remains one to be interested in now that he's back in the winning groove having made good progress last season when getting on a roll with four straight wins.