Cheltenham done. Aintree done. And while the Flat steps up a gear this weekend with Classic trials we are not quite done with National Hunt racing.
Oh no. The Scottish National hits us hard today and Fairyhouse and Punchestown are just around the corner. This blog is pumped and ready to hit Paddy as hard as it did with Duke of Lucca last weekend – you hear me Paddy?
The big betting Saturday race of the day has to be the 30-runner Scottish National at Ayr (3.50pm). I’m going to have two against the field in double digit MISTER MARKER and TRUSTAN TIMES.
Mister Marker was third here 12 months ago behind Godsmedjudge and runs off the same mark of 133. He is in good form, stays strong, likes the track and might be well suited by better ground after a fine effort on heavy last time.
Trustan Times was just behind the Grand National Pineau De Re hero in the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham over hurdles, but has plenty of chase form in staying contests. He could be well handicapped.
The Scottish Champion Hurdle gets some funny old results, and it won’t be easy for My Tent or Yours under topweight.
I will have an each-way bet on COTTON MILL, who is over a stone better off with MTOY from their Fighting Fifth form earlier in the season with just over six lengths to find!
At Newbury, all eyes on the Classic contenders in the Greenham Stakes. The one I like is BERKSHIRE (2.55pm) here who has always promised to be a better three-year-old – and he wasn’t a bad juvenile! He landed the listed Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket.
He’s always been held in high regard – and it’s about time Paul Cole had another top horse.
Finally, check out NOBLE MISSION (1.50) who has the back class and off a rating of 111 he can be a big winner for Lady Cecil in the 1m 4f where the improver looks to be Astonishing.
We know the five-year-old is a bit of a character, and he could only finish third last year when favourite – but I expect him to score this time.
So have a cracking weekend, a mixture of classy Flat and jumps racing which we’ll have much more of to smash up Paddy next week! Yeeehaaa!