Well we smashed it. Top jock Ruby Walsh and I had five against the field in the Grand National – but I found the winner Many Clouds at 25/1. You hear me Ruby? Bet that hurt,. Paddy.
This weekend we have a mixture of classy jumps and Flat racing at Ayr and Newbury – so let’s start with the former and the Scottish Champion Hurdle (2.35pm).
There’s quite a big field going to post and a strong gallop looks assured. This should suit a closer and the one I like is GASSIN GOLF who had some good ground Flat form and is perfectly capable off a revised mark of 141.
He finally got off the mark over hurdles last time at Newbury and this will be right up his street for Tom Scudamore and Richard Lee. He should be a double-figure price so back him each-way.
DUKE OF NAVAN (3.10pm) has been beaten at short odds the last twice. However, he has been dropped a few pounds in the ratings and I think this surface will be perfect for him in the 2m handicap chase.
The big one at Ayr is the Scottish National (3.45pm). There’s 30 runners and Paddy’s paying five places so I’m having two against the field. TRUSTAN TIMES was third in this contest last year and HARRY THE VIKING who is in form but 1lb out the handicap.
The former has been poor of late but I just feel he might bounce back here under James Reveley, while Harry the Viking was once rated higher and is in consistent shape. The ground is fine for both.
They switch codes to the Flat at Newbury and the Group 3 Greenham Stakes 2.50pm marks the return of the Dewhurst winner Belardo.
I’m not a huge fan but Godolphin are flying so he could easily go close.
The one I like is IVAWOOD. He was disappointing on his final start last season but always promised to be a better three-year-old and the Richard Hannon camp is flying. He is the favourite – but I love him.
Good handicap form
Finally, the Spring Cup (3.25pm) is a fine betting heat over a mile. Horses that ran in the Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster usually do well here as they are race-fit. I like BUCKSTAY for Peter Chapple-Hyam and Jim Crowley who finished second to Gabriel and reoppose the likely favourite again.
He travels really well and has good handicap form. Fingers crossed he hits the frame at least in another race where Paddy’s paying the first five home.
So best of luck and enjoy another big weekend of action. Yeeehaaa!
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