So the New Year is well and truly under way, and it’s a typically tough Saturday with tricky handicaps featuring in many of the bigger betting heats.
Let’s see if we can bang in a few winners and smash Paddy up once again. You hear me, Paddy?
I’m going to start at Sandown, where there is a near 2m handicap chase at 1.50pm. A lot of these are at the top of their handicap marks, but the interesting one down in trip might be BARRAKILLA (), who has some fair form and could appreciate a likely strong gallop. Have a few quid eachway.
It’s the Grade 1 Tolworth at Sandown at 2.25pm, and there’s no doubt for me YORKHILL () will take all the beating. The Willie Mullins raider was a good bumper horse, and promises to be even better over jumps.
There’s a veterans chase at Sandown at 3pm, and the one I like is SOLL () for David Pipe and Tom Scudamore. The selection loves soft ground and a trip and goes well at the track. He must be hard to keep out the frame.
Finally at Sandown I’ve had a look at the near 2m handicap hurdle at 3.35pm, and the one I’ll back eachway is RAYVIN BLACK () . he has good course form and likes some dig. With an easy lead hard to peg back for Oliver Sherwood.
Elsewhere the ground is bottomless at Ayr, which should suit CULTRAM ABBEY () better than most in the handicap chase at 2.05pm. The big hope of Nicky Richards is a little bit in and out, but on a going day has every chance.
There’s an extended 2m5f handicap hurdle at Ayr at 2.40pm, and I like SHADES OF MIDNIGHT for the Whillans family. This is really tough with some out of form horses, but hopefully we get in the mix.
Finally, there’s a valuable handicap at Chelmsford over nearly 1m6f on the Flat at 3.20pm. Back the Andrew Balding-trained BALLYNANTY () who ran well in defeat at Wolverhampton last time and is improving all the time.
So best of luck. A tough day – but that’s when we get going. Yeeehaaa!