Alan Thompson has two selections from the all weather card at Kempton and a summer jump card at Southwell...
"focus on the fact he's come down in the handicap and is now lower than his last winning mark"
James Fanshawe's charge can bring home the goods
James Fanshawe runs his five-year-old gelding Merchant Of Venice at Kempton tonight and he has a great record round here with fives runs over course and distance producing finishing positions of (most recent first) 3-3-3-1-1. Ignore his last run as the soft ground clearly didn't suit, instead focus on the fact he's come down in the handicap and is now lower than his last winning mark of 79 for the first time since that win. Today he runs off 78.
His stable has also returned three wins from 20 runners in the last 14 days and Merchant Of Venice has the invaluable assistance of Tom Marquand on board who has ridden 14 winners in the last 14 days. Throw in his good draw then everything looks to be in place for him to run a massive race.
Byron's fitness will see him fly around Southwell
Byron Flyer has a good level of Nation Hunt form but it could well be his recent flat runs that give him the fitness edge to win this race. Ian Wiliams' charge won't mind the ground, stays the trip well and was progressive when last seen over hurdles. I think the trainer will be sure they make full use of his flat pace and his clear race fitness to try and run these into the ground. And it will take a decent horse to beat him today given the clear disadvantages as regards race fitness most of the pure National Hunt horses in the race face.
Hunters Call won a very nice handicap when last seen but that was 921 days ago, he would have to be a very decent animal to win this Class 2 event in spite of that lay-off. I'm happy to back Byron Flyer win only.
2020 (prior to this week) : +2.88pts
This week so far...
Staked: 5 pts
Returned: 0 pts
2020 P&L +0.88 pts
2019 P&L +0.31 pts
2018 P&L +82.29 pts
2017 P&L +53.30 pts
2016 P&L +15.23 pts