Timeform Shortlist: Ascot, Saturday December 23

There's racing at Ascot on Saturday afternoon
There's racing at Ascot on Saturday afternoon

Timeform's free Shortlist comes from Ascot on Saturday...

"...ran a mighty race conceding 6 lb to the well-ridden winner at Newbury last time and can land this Grade 1 for the second season running"

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12.40 Foundation Developments Novices' Handicap Hurdle (4) 2m7f118y

Analyst's Verdict:
Forgetthesmalltalk is progressing nicely and could open his account in what looks a competitive handicap. Nicky Henderson's pair Christmas In April and Comely both look players, while Hatchet Jack could improve now handicapping.

Timeform Top Rated:
130 12. KINGS TEMPTATION Ben Case Daryl Jacob
129p 4. FORGETTHESMALLTALK Alan King Wayne Hutchinson
128p 7. CHRISTMAS IN APRIL Nicky Henderson Ned Curtis (5)

1.15 Sodexo Graduation Chase (2) 2m5f8y

Analyst's Verdict:
Just the 3 runners, but not an easy race to assess. Coney Island has been off for the best part of a year, but he looked a chaser going places, so assuming all is well with him, he could be the answer. An on-song More of That would be a huge threat, but that is doubtful, so Adrien du Pont is feared most.

Timeform Top Rated:
173p 1. CONEY ISLAND Edward P. Harty Barry Geraghty
170p 3. ADRIEN DU PONT Paul Nicholls Sam Twiston-Davies

1.50 My Pension Expert Handicap Chase (2) 2¼m175y

Analyst's Verdict:
Competitive fare, but Theo's Charm ran another cracker when third in a valuable handicap over hurdles at Haydock last month and his lower chase mark appears to be lenient. Rock On Rocky has also been done a favour by the assessor having been eased 1 lb despite an excellent second last time. Monbeg River completes the shortlist.

Timeform Top Rated:
155 7. THEO'S CHARM Nick Gifford Leighton Aspell
154 12. ROCK ON ROCKY Matt Sheppard Stan Sheppard (3)
154 5. MONBEG RIVER Martin Todhunter Henry Brooke

2.25 JLT Reve de Sivola Long Walk Hurdle (Grade 1) (1) 3m97y

Analyst's Verdict:
Unowhatimeanharry ran a mighty race conceding 6 lb to the well-ridden winner at Newbury last time and can land this Grade 1 for the second season running. Improving 5-y-os Sam Spinner and Thomas Campbell should both be competitive at this level, while Ascot Hurdle 1-2 Lil Rockerfeller and L'Ami Serge are likely to be in the thick of things again.

Timeform Top Rated:
177 9. UNOWHATIMEANHARRY Harry Fry Barry Geraghty
176 3. LIL ROCKERFELLER Neil King Trevor Whelan
175 2. L'AMI SERGE Nicky Henderson Daryl Jacob

3.00 Lavazza Silver Cup Handicap Chase (Listed) (1) 2m7f180y

Analyst's Verdict:
A cracking heat in prospect with plenty to consider. On Tour has returned in top form, winning at Aintree and going well when unseating at Newbury, and gets the vote as he's almost certainly still well-handicapped. Singlefarmpayment and Go Conquer head the dangers.

Timeform Top Rated:
169 7. SINGLEFARMPAYMENT Tom George A. P. Heskin
168 9. ON TOUR Evan Williams Mitchell Bastyan (5)
167 3. GO CONQUER Jonjo O'Neill Aidan Coleman

3.35 Racing Welfare Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) (1) 1m7f152y

Analyst's Verdict:
Silver Streak has been given a break since making a big impression on his reappearance at Chepstow and, with further progress a distinct possibility he is fancied to defy an 8 lb higher mark under the promising Mitchell Bastyan. Charli Parcs got back on track at Newbury and is a clear threat, with Elgin, Bleu Et Rouge and Nietzsche also worthy of a second look in a classy contest.

Timeform Top Rated:
164p 12. SILVER STREAK Evan Williams Mitchell Bastyan (5)
163 8. FERGALL Seamus Mullins Kevin Jones (5)
162 6. BLEU ET ROUGE W. P. Mullins Barry Geraghty

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