Timeform Radio Tip: Join the Hunt for Gold

Will it be hats of to the Tizzard team at Wincanton?

Rory Delargy heads to a rather squelchy Wincanton for Thursday's best bets...

"Ultragold would be an unlikely candidate for the Festival with an official mark of just 121, but he's looked ahead of the handicapper's assessment on his last three starts, and I've no doubt whatsoever that he is at least a stone 'well in'."

Double Jeopardy is a dangerous game, and I'm always wary of tipping a horse more than once if it failed to win at this first time of asking. That's cost me a big priced winner or two, with Nargys one memorable example, having finally got it right in style at Doncaster last autumn having bombed out on two occasions I'd put her up earlier in the year. Sometimes you have to give one another chance, though, and I'm hoping that the well-handicapped Ultragold can prove that point by scoring at Wincanton today. 

Colin Tizzard's charge tackles the competitive Dick Hunt Handicap Chase at 14:40, and the race looks wide open at first glance, with several of the runners expected to be Cheltenham bound for either the Kim Muir or the Festival Plate next month. At this juncture, Ultragold would be an unlikely candidate for the Festival with an official mark of just 121, but he's looked ahead of the handicapper's assessment on his last three starts, and I've no doubt whatsoever that he is at least a stone "well in".

At Lingfield last month, he travelled much the best for much of the three-mile journey, looking capable of winning by a wide margin until he seemed to find his stamina stretched on the heavy ground. That wasn't the first time that the six-year-old had finished weakly, and the fact that he's worn a tongue tie on his last few starts suggest that he's been compromised by a wind issue. Given his break since that effort, it would be no surprise to hear he's had his breathing tweaked (the fact the tongue tie is retained suggests otherwise, but Mr Tizzard is something of a belt-and-braces handler, and pre-race interviews will be revealing). The drop back in trip on a speed-favouring track is a bonus, and both his wins in France for Gilles Chaignon came at intermediate trips. 

In the hunter chase at 16:10, all eyes will be on Richards Sundance, who is better know for his handicap exploits, and is the form pick on last season's efforts. For a horse with the reputation of going well fresh, he was very disappointing at Exeter recently, though, and it's taking a chance to suggest that he's in the form to take advantage of today's task. On the other hand, Coombe Hill is much better than his form figures suggest, having lost his edge in the spring, but he returned with a creditable point effort behind the talented Rumbavu, weakening only as a lack of match-practice showed, and is clearly back to himself. With the favourite needing to prove his well-being, the dependable Coombe Hill looks too big in the betting at around 7/2, and can improve on his second in the corresponding contest last year.  

Recommendations:

Both at Wincanton

Back Ultragold @ 4.1 in the 14:40 (NAP)

Back Coombe Hill @ 4.77/2 in the 16:10 (NB)

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