A non-stayer over four miles at the Cheltenham Festival, the selection can turn that form around with Ms Parfois over this shorter trip at Newbury
Richard Johnson and La Bague Au Roi clearing the water jump at Newbury on Friday. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images
Colin Tizzard could be about to enjoy a second success in the Ladbrokes Trophy, or the Hennessy as many still know it, but not with the horse that most would pick as his first string. Elegant Escape has his chance, of course, but Sizing Tennessee (3.00) appeals even more at the 16-1 which is generally available.
This solid-looking chaser joined Tizzard from Ireland a couple of years ago and has raced frequently while making steady progress. His jumping looked sharper, though still not fault-free, when he scored on his reappearance last month, beating a horse who has won twice since.
A non-stayer over four miles at the Festival, Sizing Tennessee can turn that form around with Ms Parfois over this shorter trip. She has tended to need a run in the past, while Elegant Escape’s jumping makes him vulnerable. Thomas Patrick can do best of the fancied runners, though his odds are short enough and it is possible to question whether he is a strong enough stayer for a test like this.
1.50 Newbury Nicky Henderson seems to have saved some significant firepower for this two-day meeting at his local track and Champ figures high on the list. Out of a half-sister to Best Mate, he falls into the ‘could be anything’ category after three exploratory runs over hurdles last term and there is more than a suspicion that his rating for this handicap debut understates his ability.
2.05 Newcastle Samcro’s last two runs provide a vivid illustration of what can go wrong when you take short odds about a popular horse who has yet to grow into his reputation. He may have a fitness edge over his main rival but Buveur D’Air is the one with proven quality on his side and he is on offer at odds-against for the first time in 20 months.
2.25 Newbury Having built up a following during his novice season last winter, Whatswrongwithyou was favourite for the Imperial Cup but the race did not work out well for him and the testing surface did not appear to suit. One summer later and still on the same mark, the chestnut could have a bit in hand over the handicapper.
3.20 Newcastle It’s fascinating to see the 2016 winner of this race, Otago Trail, returning from a long absence, just 1lb higher than for his last win and from a stable that won with another long-absent runner on Friday. But preference is for the younger Testify, who looked like a chaser to follow in the first half of last season. Donald McCain’s charge should probably not be judged harshly for flopping at the spring festivals and has since had a wind operation.
3.35 Newbury A chance is taken at double-figure odds on Shear Rock, beaten only by a classy sort on his first start for Kerry Lee in January. He was then given a wind op which may partly explain why he missed the rest of term. This looks a good opportunity for a young, unexposed horse like him.Quick guide
Saturday tipsShow Hide
11.50 Style De Vole 12.25 Marley Firth (nap) 1.00 Beakstown 1.35 Didero Vallis 2.05 Buveur D’Air 2.40 Champagne Platinum 3.20 Testify
12.00 Red Royalist 12.35 Queen’s Magic 1.10 Haafapiece 1.45 All Currencies 2.15 Potterman 2.50 Inchcolm 3.25 Book Of Invasions
12.10 Lust For Glory 12.45 Santini 1.20 Adrien Du Pont 1.50 Champ 2.25 Whatswrongwithyou 3.00 Sizing Tennessee (nb) 3.35 Shear Rock
12.20 Tommy Rapper 12.55 Mr Monochrome 1.30 Fleminport 2.00 Flash The Steel 2.35 Finawn Bawn 3.10 Solstice Twilight 3.45 Just Rocky
5.15 Secret Ace 5.45 The Night Watch 6.15 Kodiac Pride 6.45 False ID 7.15 Areen Heart 7.45 Salute The Soldier 8.15 Rainbow Jazz 8.45 Lucky’s Dream
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