Timeform UK SmartPlays: Saturday December 19

It's Ladbroke Hurdle day on Saturday at Ascot
It's Ladbroke Hurdle day on Saturday at Ascot

There is plenty of competitive racing across the UK on Saturday, and Timeform pick out their best bets.

"He remains open to improvement after just three starts over this distance, and may well improve passed Saphir du Rheu..."

Big Casino - 13:50 Ascot

A competitive race, but there could be some value to be had in backing Big Casino, who has shaped better than the beaten distance suggests on both of his starts this season, and looks to have a bigger performance in him from just 5 lbs above his last winning mark. His biggest dangers look to be La Vaticane, who has done nothing wrong since joining David Pipe, and the unexposed Mon Successeur.

Three Faces West - 14:05 Haydock

The interesting runner here is Three Faces West, an Irish point winner with a good national hunt pedigree, who did well to notch up a three-timer over hurdles last season for Donald McCain. He looks on a lenient handicap mark based on his form last season, and it would be no surprise to see him make a bright start for Phillip Hobbs, who continues in excellent form. Fellow handicap debutante Montdragon would rate the biggest danger to the selection.

Thistlecrack - 14:25 Ascot

Thistlecrack could be the one to be with here, after making a winning start to his second season over hurdles when winning the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury last time, when he had both Cole Harden and Whisper behind him. He remains open to improvement after just three starts over this distance, and may well improve passed Saphir du Rheu, who once again reverts to timber, after finishing fifth in the Hennessy last month. Reve de Sivola bids to win this race for the fourth consecutive season, and also commands plenty of respect.


Timeform UK SmartPlays

Back Big Casino in the 13:50 at Ascot
Back Three Faces West in the 14:05 at Haydock
Back Thistlecrack in the 14:25 at Ascot

Get a Free £/€20 Exchange Bet

  • Join Now - Open your account today using promo code VAL225
  • Bet - Place a £/€20 Bet on the Exchange
  • Earn - £/€20 Back in cash if your bet loses
Bet Now

T&Cs apply.

Discover the latest articles

Read past articles