We should have a belting Saturday of action in store, and there will be a lot of eyes on Constitution Hill, who hopefully runs in the Fighting Fifth and gets to strut his stuff once more. There aren’t many more exciting horses in training at the moment, so all being well, we don’t have farcical scenes like we had at Ascot last week.
1.55pm Newbury - Walking On Air
I will return to Newcastle later, but as for a betting proposition, I am focussing on Newbury, where WALKING ON AIR can hopefully get back on track and land the 1.55 at Newbury. The five-year-old created a favourable impression when scotting clear by 13 lengths on his hurdling debut in January.
It has been a bit stop-start for him since, as various niggles prevented him from making the Cheltenham Festival, and it was a rush to get him to the Grade 1 at Aintree where he failed to fire. Into Handicap company today, he will have to be on point with his jumping, but he has the propensity to be absolutely lobbed in off a mark of 132, and so I am siding with his undoubted potential.
3.05pm Newbury - Oscar Elite
In the big one, the Coral Gold Cup, it looks as competitive as you would expect, and perhaps without the obvious ‘Grade 1 second-season chaser masquerading in a handicap’.
Nonetheless, OSCAR ELITE has the potential to go well off a mark of 139, and he was my tip for this at 33/1 in the Antepost Armchair column. Fingers crossed he can run a big race with Harry Cobden booked to ride.
1.20pm Newbury - Java Point (Each Way)
Elsewhere on the card, I like JAVA POINT from an each-way perspective in the 1.20.
The seven-year-old arrives after a break, after being in scintillating form when last seen. He arrives here on a hattrick, enjoys Good ground, has won at Newbury, and the Tom George team have suddenly hit form after a quiet spell.
12.30pm Newcastle - Captain Quint
Looking at Newcastle, and CAPTAIN QUINT who won on Chase debut at Hexham last time out, can continue the winning thread here.
The six-year-old has been bumped up 5lb for that success, but that looks fair. The step back up in distance ought to suit too, and I think he will take all the beating with Craig Nichol on board.
1.35pm Newcastle - Lord Roco
I like the claims of LORD ROCO heading back up in trip on his second chase start. He was a bit unlucky at Ayr on Chase debut when pecking on landing at the last. This greater test of stamina should suit and I expect him to be bang in the mix here.
3.25pm Newcastle - Happygolucky (Each Way)
In the Rehearsal Chase, undoubtedly the star of the show is L’Homme Presse, but the vibes are that he may need the run, and off 164, he is set a mammoth task first time out on ground that may be faster than ideal for him.
As an each-way alternative, I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Kim Bailey trained HAPPYGOLUCKY run a big race on the back of a 595-day layoff. The yard have been amongst the winners lately, and this unexposed sort - who showed some very smart Novice Chase form could be the answer here.
- Java Point, Newbury 1.20, 0.5pts e/w 14/1 (Paddy Power)
- Walking On Air, Newbury 1.55, 1pt win 7/2 (Betfred)
- Captain Quint, Newcastle 12.30, 1pt win 13/8 (bet365)
- Lord Roco, Newcastle 1.35, 1pt win 5/2 (bet365)
- Happygolucky, Newcastle 3.25, 1pt e/w 6/1 (bet365)
- (Antepost Armchair Column) Oscar Elite, 1pt win 33/1
* Betting odds correct at the time of publication. All odds are subject to changes.