Horse Racing Tips

Saturday Racing Tips: Kate Tracey likes a big priced runner at Sandown's jump season finale

Sandown
Kate Tracey likes a big priced runner in bet365 Gold Cup

"This trip should be far more feasible for Hewick and he has good ground in his favour too. He’s bang there on ratings to be featuring amongst quality staying opposition. This Irish raider has plenty in his favour to be siding with him each-way."

It's the jump season finale at Sandown on Saturday where there may be small field sizes but there are four betting opportunities on offer for Kate Tracey across three races...

Fisher has all variables in his favour

The Jump Season Finale at Sandown is always a cracker of a meeting but there has been a fairly poor turnout this year in terms of runners and betting opportunities are certainly limited.

However, there are four bets on offer for me that look fair prices at the time of writing.

The first race to assess, is the Grade 2 Oaksey Chase at 14:25 which looks a perfect opportunity for Mister Fisher to get back to winning ways. This eight-year-old is certainly an enigmatic character where he doesn't cut it at Grade 1 level but a small field, Grade 2 is where he's at his best.

Mister Fisher finished second in this race last year behind Frodon who only justified his 4/5 favouritism by a neck from a gallant Mister Fisher in second. There isn't a Frodon-type rival to have to contend with in this year's renewal which should make his job all that more straight forward.

He has only had four starts so far this season beginning with a reappearance run in the King George where he pulled up. The King George has a very poor record for horses making their seasonal debut so instantly, that trend was against Mister Fisher. He never featured at any stage throughout the Boxing Day showpiece but little was expected of him at the same time.

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He ventured back to the scene of his King George defeat for his next start where he won the Grade 2 Silviniaco Conti Chase when dropped back to 2m4f110y. The race conditions he faced on that occasion are very similar to what he has at Sandown. Just three rivals to contend with, each had their own significant questions to have to answer where Mister Fisher proved the horse with the most ability.

Again, he found Grade 1 company too hot in the Betfair Ascot Chase on his subsequent outing where he finished tailed off. His Aintree jumping frailties resurfaced last time out when tried again in Grade 1 company in the Marsh Chase where he pulled up.

The fact Mister Fisher pulled up on his latest start doesn't deter me as he's twice won on the back of a pull up in his career.

A sound surface sees him to best effect as well as this intermediate trip and a small field of runners. All these factors should make Mister Fisher difficult to beat.

Greaneteen (just) favoured over Nube Negra

It's another small field of runners in the Grade 1 Celebration Chase at 15:00 but it remains a fascinating clash between two who have been aimed at the race. Those are Greaneteen representing the champion trainer, Paul Nichollsand Nube Negra from the Dan Skelton yard who sit third in the trainers' championship.

Both eight-year-olds have been freshened up and avoided Cheltenham in favour of this Grade 1 prize at Sandown. The pair will also both be suited by the sound surface and have good course records.

It's difficult therefore, to split the two leading fancies. My slight preference is for last year's winner, Greaneteen who will be partnered by Harry Cobden on this occasion with Bryony Frost currently side-lined.

Greaneteen has run at Sandown four times in his career with form figures of 6, 2, 1, 1- the sixth-place finish coming on stable and British debut in 2018. Since that run he's finished second in the 2020 Tingle Creek behind Politologue before winning the Celebration Chase last year and this season's Tingle Creek.

His success in this race came at the expense of Altior no less who finished 3 ¾ lengths behind in second. Of course, there are various arguments why end of the season form should be taken with a pinch of salt and perhaps that was the case to an extent in 2021.

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However, Greaneteen was able to confirm himself as one of the best British two-mile chasers when dotting up in the Tingle Creek in December. He had the reopposing Nube Negra 12 lengths behind him that day in fourth. Again, many will argue that Greaneteen was merely seen to such a devastating effect as he was ridden with restraint where Chacun Pour Soi and Hitman set it up for a closer.

It was well documented that Chacun Pour Soi massively underperformed and Nube Negra probably found the race came too soon after his Cheltenham success. The latter is certainly a horse who goes best fresh and on a decent surface so of course, I'm very wary of him in this race.

Greaneteen must bounce back from a very substandard performance at the Dublin Racing Festival where he was beaten miles to finish last of the five runners. It was well documented at the time that Paul Nicholls's horses had been running poorly after receiving their flu jabs though. His two runners he sent to Leopardstown both ran too bad to be true so I'm not homing in on that run as a negative.

Back at the scene of his career best performance, Greaneteen can win another Celebration Chase.

One to chance at a price in bet365 Gold Cup

We finally have a proper betting heat on our hands in the Grade 3 bet365 Gold Cup Handicap Chase at 15:32 with 15, yes 15, declared runners.

We also have the added storyline of the unfinished business of last year's race where a bizarre turn of events ended with a very unsatisfactory result. We have the three runners who fought out that controversial finish to this race last year reopposing this time around. Two of which are propping up the market in Enrilo and Kitty's Light.

Enrilo is the current favourite at 4.57/2 who technically, was first past the post in the race last year. Kitty's Light, who should have won the 2021 renewal in my opinion but was hampered by Enrilo on the run to the line, sits second in the market.

Last season's bet365 Gold Cup eventually fell to Potterman who is a much bigger price than his reopposing rivals in a bid to regain his crown.

I like two in the race but my main selection is a much bigger price than the saver bet. The first horse to consider therefore, is Hewick who represents the John Joseph Hanlon yard.

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This seven-year-old won the Durham National on his penultimate start as a six-year-old where Shane Fenelon took his 7lb claim off Hewick's back. The horse had had a busy time of things prior to his Sedgefield success, having been on the go since April and through the summer. However, the Durham National had certainly looked a plan that came off in good style.

He won the 3m5f contest despite not jumping well where it looked for much of the race that the market support wasn't going to be founded. However, it didn't stop him and he still ran out an easy winner by 6 1/2l from Red Giant.

The eventual second had won the race the season prior and looked teed up for a return to the race with the strong market support reflecting that also.

But Hewick justified his own market support to win off a mark of 142 which is 7lb lower than he's running off at Sandown. He also had a 7lb claimer on his back at Sedgefield whereas he only has Jordan Gainford's 3lb claim this time around. Therefore, he's technically 11lb worse off in these terms which will make his task that bit more difficult against much sterner opposition.

He pulled up last time out in the Midlands National which was his first start for five months so he was entitled to need the run to a large extent over that marathon trip of 4m2f. He tried to make most but was hampered and weakened out of contention so was ultimately, pulled up by Gainford.

This trip should be far more feasible for Hewick and he has good ground in his favour too. He's bang there on ratings to be featuring amongst quality staying opposition. This Irish raider has plenty in his favour to be siding with him each-way at 26.025/1

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I must have a small saver on Enrilo in this race at 4.57/2 for all he wasn't a horse I liked for the race last year. He certainly isn't a horse to rely on by any means and there are plenty of question marks about his attitude and aptitude to stick to the task however, he has developed a perfect profile for this year's renewal.

He finished first past the post in this race last year before being disqualified and demoted to third place. He then took a crashing fall on his reappearance in the Ladbrokes Trophy but was able to bounce back quickly to run in the Grade 3 Betfair Handicap Chase at Cheltenham. He pulled up when sent off as the 11/4 favourite for that race where he made a bad early error and was on the backfoot thereafter. He eventually pulled up which was a disappointing run.

However, on the back of a two-month break, he got back on track with a good fourth in the Grade 3 Coral Trophy Handicap Chase at Kempton won by Cap Du Nord.
He did best of those ridden prominently where it clearly paid to be held up. He's been given 2lb back for that run and at a track he goes well at, must be included as a bet.

Recommended bets

Kate's P/L

Staked: 7pts
Returns: +5.2
Overall: -1.8

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