Wednesday 21st February

2.25pm Ludlow – Coastal Tiep 2pts Win (2/1)

Coastal Tiep’s best efforts have come on better ground so this drying surface should play to his strengths. He beat Wotzizname on chase debut who has since won twice and then was second to Captain Chaos at Aintree on ground softer than ideal and that rival has also gone in twice since. When winning at Exeter he didn’t do very much in front so I think having Rayvin Black in the race who is a proven front runner, should set the race up nicely for Coastal Tiep who can pounce late on under Sean Bowen.

3.05pm Punchestown – Pravalaguna 1pt Win (4/1)

Meri Devie is favourite here for Willie Mullins but I’m siding with his second string to come out on top due to me not being convinced that his leading fancy will stay the distance under these conditions. Pravalaguna won first time up last season and that was actually her only run over this distance. She was in the process of running a very good race when travelling well in a Grade 2 around this time last year before coming down two out. The form of her Listed race third at Auteuil in May has worked out well with the fourth that day winning a Listed contest at Leicester last month. This half-sister of the high class Petit Mouchoir can prove she’s no back number and make a winning return.

3.45pm Newcastle – Corinthia Knight 3pts Win (6/4)

I think this contest should be fairly straightforward for Archie Watsons reliable colt Corinthia Knight, who is 3-3 over 5f on the All-Weather. A really talented sprinter, particularly so on the artificial surfaces, for a trainer who has started this campaign in exceptional form. He has the benefit over a recent run over chief market rival To Wafij and this looks a brilliant opportunity to pick up a nice pot, he should just win.

4.05pm Ludlow – Cereal Killer 1pt Win (13/2)

I don’t think this is a very strong race and a chance is worth taking at the prices on Cereal Killer. He won a pair of Point to Points in emphatic style before moving to Paul Nicholls where he made his debut over 2 miles which I really don’t think suited him at all. He steps immediately up to 3 miles today which should see him in much better light and he can serve it up from the front.

4.20pm Newcastle – Lovely Approach 1pt Win (4/1)

I’m taking a chance that Hugo Palmer has got Lovely Approach fit enough to win on his debut, but considering he’s the trainers only runner here today and the fact that the Newmarket handler has a 22% strike rate at Newcastle, I don’t think he’d be making the journey up just for the fun of it. He’s a son of Lovely Pass who won the UAE 1000 Guineas on Tapeta so this surface should be an absolutely ideal starting point. He’s bred to be very good and is definitely worth a chance on debut.

4.30pm Doncaster – Stop The World 1pt Win (4/1)

Tom George has a 21% strike rate with his bumper runners in the last five years and that bodes well for his son of Oscar. Stop The World was second in his Point to Point behind a horse called Brewin’Upastorm who has since moved to Olly Murphy and won a bumper easily before finishing fourth in a Listed race at Newbury. The third in the aforementioned Point to Point came out and won next time. Stop The World is a half-brother to Willie Mullins’ Up For Review who won his bumper debut and I’m hoping that he’s ready to go today and make a winning start to his rules career.

5.10pm Ludlow – War Creation 1pt Win (3/1)

The things key to this horse I feel are ground and stamina, both of which should be in her favour today. A pair of appearances on soft ground or worse have both yielded victories and her best run came last time out on heavy at Haydock over 2m3f. The hurdles track at Ludlow today is soft and this extra couple of furlongs should really help War Creation and I can see her going in again.

 

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