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11/04 Wetherby Preview – Trio For Rio The Horse To Beat In The Novices’ Hurdle

Syndicate Captain Cheltmental is back with a preview of Thursday’s Wetherby Card, to provide his insight into how to tackle the Boosted £10,000 Place 6 Pool. You can also join his Wetherby Syndicate by clicking here.


13:50 – Maiden Hurdle (Class 5) (4yo+)

A good sized field for this opener with quite a few sporting some form of headgear, which can be a worry in a Maiden Hurdle when considering reliability. Golden Wolf ran in a hood on his hurdle debut when a 7l second. He’s raced since without the hood but it returns for this so, while he’s clearly not straightforward, he might have enough ability to play a part here given his flat rating.

Another horse with a similar flat mark is Magellan, who has been miles off in two hurdle starts earlier this year but has since had a wind op. The Maestro looks a much more obvious contender and this ex winning pointer has had a couple of spins in bumpers this season which should have brought him forward enough for a bold bid on his hurdle bow. The booking of Nick Scholfield is a positive also.

What’s The Scoop was favourite for a Class 3 maiden on debut but that was a long time ago now and this 9yo clearly has his issues. Swordbill has twice raced in Class 2 hurdles and was due to run Wednesday at Warwick. He was a late non runner there but that move could prove a wise one as this is a significant drop in class and company.

Isaac Wonder is one of the more solid runners in the race and he could well be good enough to land this.

Selections – Golden Wolf, Magellan, The Maestro, Swordbill, Isaac Wonder



14:20 – Selling Hurdle (Class 4) (4yo+)

There are only two places up for grabs in this second leg and the most intriguing runner for me is American Tom. He was once owned by Rich Ricci and trained by Willie Mullins, was 6/5f for a Grade 3 over fences and was rated just shy of 150. That was just over a year ago so his rate of decline is very concerning. He also was beaten 10l by Carrigmoorna Matt who re-opposes here.

He was well supported when winning that day but failed to receive a bid after the race. He’s likely to go close once again given that this step up in trip is likely to suit and this field doesn’t look any deeper. Ardera Cross was second in that race so, despite being picked up late on and this being another furlong further, you can expect him to play his part too. Donnas Dream is the youngest runner in the field and on her best running could go well.

Selections – Carrigmoorna Matt, Ardera Cross, American Tom, Donnas Dream



14:55 – Handicap Chase (Class 4) (5yo+ 0-110)

Las Tunas hacked up round here at the end of march and, with conditions very much the same again, he is expected to go well despite the 8lb rise. Oliver’s Gold was behind Las Tunas that day but the 8lb swing, coupled with his rapid decline in the ratings, suggests that he could run well again.

Reverse The Charge won twice at the back end of last year before being well beaten in December. He’s since had a wind op which is interesting at least

Selections – Las Tunas, Oliver’s Gold, Reverse The Charge


15:25 – Handicap Hurdle (Div I) (Class 4) (4yo+ 0-115)

De Forgotten One looked better than a 117 horse when winning at Doncaster earlier this year and is back running at around that trip here for his handicap bow, which makes him very interesting.

Morraman might be the biggest danger having run well enough after a wind op last month but Zamoyski has won the last two races in which Jamie Moore has ridden him, so despite this requiring a career best, and those wins coming in 2017, that combination are likely to go well again

Selection – De Forgotten One, Zamoyski



16:00 – Handicap Hurdle (Div II) (Class 4) (4yo+ 0-115)

Ask Paddington has won twice in a row about this trip and can be involved again despite a 4lb rise. Desert Sensation is now back down to his last winning mark of 113 and he will have needed his comeback run last month. Trip might be on the short side for him these days but I can see him running well.

Solo Saxophone was sixth in the 2018 Fred Winter at the Cheltenham Festival and, while he’s been on a rapid decline since then, he’s off a dangerously low mark and goes under Harry Skelton for the first time since being sent off just 12/1 for a Class 1 Novice Hurdle.

Arthur’s Sixpence ran well last month over 2m which would have been too short for his ideal and that came after a break and a wind op. That earnt his mark of 105 which might prove to be very lenient.

Selections – Desert Sensation, Solo Saxophone, Arthur’s Sixpence



16:30 – Novices’ Hurdle (Class 4) (4yo+)

The final leg appears to have the most obvious chance of the day in Trio For Rio who runs for Warren Greatrex under Richard Johnson. He’s comfortably the best horse in the race and was beaten by a neck two starts ago when the champion jockey took him round for the first time.

The only danger would appear to be Let’s Get At It, who runs under a triple penalty which means he’s up against it with the main selection.

Selections – Trio For Rio, Let’s Get At It


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