Paul Nicholls: Mercy the pick of my five Saturday runners

Betfair Ambassador Paul Nicholls
Paul NIcholls will saddle five runners across three meetings on Saturday

It's a relatively low key day of racing in the Nationa Hunt sphere on Saturday but Betfair Ambassador Paul Nicholls still has five runners across three meetings...

"Trip and ground at Stratford should play to the strengths of this promising horse in this maiden hurdle before he goes chasing this winter. I am hopeful he can start on the right note for us."

- Paul Nicholls on Mercy Mercy Me

Can go well for new owner

Ffos Las 15:35 - Dr Sanderson

He had a great time of things last season, winning three times for the Million in Mind team and earning a BHA rating of 135. Dr Sanderson is a strong travelling, slick jumper who appreciates flat tracks like Ffos Las and should continue to progress in the right grade. His schooling has been sound at home, he is ready to start and I'd like to think there is more to come from him for his new owner JP McManus.

Should go well back over hurdles

Ffos Las 16:15 - Le Prezien

Started last season by finishing a highly creditable second to Silver Streak in this race a year ago but found life tough over fences afterwards and I'd say his current mark of 149 is still high enough. He shouldn't mind the soft ground at Ffos Las over hurdles so I am looking for another decent run from him at the track before he goes chasing again.

Very fit but a clear round is important

Market Rasen 15:45 - Malaya

She Is a smart mare who won the Imperial Cup at Sandown in fine style, making up for an unlucky start to the campaign when she twice ended up on the ground. It's fair to say she never had the greatest respect for her hurdles because she was a bit too brave at times but although she is not the biggest I've always felt she would make a chaser and her schooling suggests she already pays more attention to her fences. We have won this race for the past two years with Capitaine and Dynamite Dollars and it looks an ideal starting point for Malaya who will be fine on soft ground. She is very fit but does need to jump well as it is important that she puts in a clear round.

Genuine sort is in good shape and goes well fresh

Market Rasen 16:20 - San Benedeto

He is a classy little horse who came good in the Grade 3 Greatwood Gold Cup in good fashion at Newbury in the spring and the ground had gone against when we fancied him in the Topham at Aintree. Life will again be challenging for this genuine horse on a mark of 153 but he has had another operation to help his breathing and he can be relied on to give his best. San Benedeto is in good shape, can go well fresh and as he has top weight it makes sense to utilise the 5lbs claim of Katie O'Farrell, a good, experienced jockey who joined us a month ago and has ridden plenty of winners in Ireland.

Hopeful of a good start

Stratford 13:45 - Mercy Mercy Me

He was down to run at Hereford on Tuesday but I took him out on the day because the ground was too quick. He was sent to us this summer after running consistently over hurdles last season without quite managing to win.
Mercy Mercy Me kept good company early in his career in champion bumpers at Cheltenham and Aintree. Trip and ground at Stratford should play to the strengths of this promising horse in this maiden hurdle before he goes chasing this winter. I am hopeful he can start on the right note for us.

*Best chance. Mercy Mercy Me has the form in the book and looks the one they all have to beat.

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