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Narrow the Field: Make sure you impress the ladies on Valentine’s Day with this 81/1 double at Haydock

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by Sean Goff | February 13, 2015

If you’re scrambling around looking for winners to avoid buying the second cheapest bunch of flowers in the petrol shop – you may just have come to the right place.

We don’t want to get all Kanye West about it but our best-price guaranteed 20/1 winner Invicta Lake two weeks ago knocked it out of the ball park and we’re looking to follow it up at Haydock as Cheltenham 2015 gets ever closer

Best price guaranteed 1430

As always inside the sweet spot is all good – outside is mostly good and sure to be popular but does it really cut it? We’re thinking Fifty Shades of Grey as a reference point.

Haydock Grand National Trial 3m 5f  

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A 3m 5f ‘slog in the bog’ will probably not have too much impact on the Aintree National when the rivers of fake tan start running through Liverpool in April.

Four horses hit the sweet spot and it’s no coincidence that two are battle-hardened former Welsh Grand National winners (Monbeg Dude & Mountainous) while Rigadin De Beauchene won this race last year.

This race isn’t for the faint-hearted so when push comes to more push up Haydock’s stamina sapping straight – these boys know what it takes to get the job done.

Benvolio looks a winner in waiting but just misses the sweet spot even if he was a short-head second to Emperor’s Choice in the Welsh Grand National. He gets the trip but just hasn’t won over it yet. Monbeg Dude finished fourth here last term off 138 and runs off 144 on Saturday while Rigadin De Beauchene is 7lbs higher than last year’s victory but has been pulled up in his three races since then.

The one negative against them is that they all haven’t won since December 2013 and February 2014 respectively and could still be in the handicapper’s grip even if Mountainous has slipped back to 137 – his 2013 Welsh Grand National winning rating – but pulled up when looking for a repeat win at Chepstow.

One that looks to be going in the right direction is Philip Hobbs’ Gas Line Boy. He beat subsequent Welsh Grand National winner Emperor’s Choice by 13L over Saturday’s course and distance before being pulled up in the heavy ground at Chepstow on Dec 27.

Now rated 142 – his last win here was off 132 – but could be progressive provided the ground doesn’t get bottomless.

Selection: Gas Line Boy

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Pertemps Handicap Hurdle 3m

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An ultra-competitive Cheltenham qualifier Bygones Sovereign has gone up 13 pounds for his hurdle win at Newbury last week to make it two wins from his last three races. Michael Heard claims 7lb off his back again and the Pipe stable won this with Top Wood (25/1) last year.

Irish raider Buddy Bolero could make the frame after winning a similar qualifier at Chepstow this time last year while Donald McCain’s Across the Bay won a Grade 2 hurdle over course and distance in February 2013 (beating Trustan Times runs in GN Trial above) has run to a mark of 143 when winning a chase here over 3m 4f.

Our latest VBF Invicta Lake is progressive and steps back up to 3m and could be the surprise package if he settles well and gets to cut through beaten horses – despite a 10lb hike in the ratings.

Selection: Bygones Sovereign

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