Friday 16th June sees another great National Hunt card (rare to find this time of year!) at Newton Abbot, with over £64,000 worth of prize money on offer. The card includes a feature Class 2 Handicap Chase, with a 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup runner. We’re set for a bright sunny day in Devon (highly contrasting to the last meeting), and some top class racing! Remember to follow me on Twitter @JakePriceTips for live updates, pictures and Tips throughout the day.
14:10 – Novices’ Hurdle (Class 4)
The afternoon card starts with an extended 2m5f contest around the Devonshire track, where Turn Turk looks to keep up her 100% record over hurdles. Nicky Henderson’s Mare looks very well treated in the weights at 10-12 for this contest after comfortably winning on hurdles debut last time out at Uttoxeter, over a 2m4f trip. If the Mare can kick on from that win, she certainly looks the pick of the bunch in a competitive opening race, where many will be entering the unknown in terms of trip. Another last time out winner comes in the shape of Old Harry Rocks, who won over hurdles at the third time of asking at Worcester over 2m4f. It is questionable however what the Harry Fry trained horse beat that day, and faces a step up in class for this contest. Trevisani is worth a mention for Paul Nicholls, who finished a remote 3rd in Class 3 company last time out, and will need to improve to compete. The Gelding also gets a weight of 11-5 for this contest, with a 7lbs claim from jockey Bryony Frost.
“In the times, Turn Turk recorded a 5m6s victory on hurdles debut, which was slightly slower than Old Harry Rocks‘ effort of 5m5s (both over 2m4f), however Nicky Henderson’s Mare will have 7lbs in hand under Jeremiah McGrath, which should be enough for the win.”
Bet: Turn Turk to Win @ 7/4 (NAP)
14:45 – Handicap Chase (Class 2)
The second race of the day is the feature race on the card, with £22,500 up for grabs in prize money. Irish Cavalier will be looking to land the spoils once again at Newton Abbot, winning over course and distance in 2015. Rebecca Curtis’ proven stayer finished third last time out at Punchestown in a Grade A Handicap, and was even a contender of the 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup, pulling up before the 17th. The experienced charge will have to run off of top weight 11-12 today, but jockey Paul Townend makes the journey over from Ireland for the ride. Ballybolley looked beaten when falling last time out, and could only manage third in his penultimate start behind Henryville over course and distance. The Nigel Twiston-Davies trained charge will have 12lbs in hand on the aforementioned at a weight of 11-0 however, so has every chance. Paul Nicholls’ Alcala won a match over course and distance last time out, and although largely unchallenged that day, has a strong chance only being given a weight of 10-13. Finally, a really interesting entry to keep an eye on is the hat-trick hunting Midnight Cowboy. Alan King’s Novice Handicap Chaser won in Class 3 company last time out at Warwick, and looks to leave Novice Company behind and tackle stronger opponents at an extremely low weight of 10-2.
“Irish Cavalier should be much too good for his rivals today, however is conceding a lot of weight all round so will need to be produced well under Paul Townend. Ballybolley looks best equipped to mop up the pieces if the weight does prove to be too much.”
Bet 1: Irish Cavalier to Win @ 11/2
Bet 2: Ballybolley to Win @ 11/4
15:20 – Mares’ Handicap Hurdle (Class 5)
We notably drop down in class for a 2m5½f battle of the Mares’ with no stand out contender. Parlour Maid won last time out at Towcester for Robert and Richard Hawker, however has been raised 7lbs for that success to 12-2. Previous course winner Hija looks the pick of the bunch however, coming in at 10-12 with a 5lbs claim from jockey Alice Mills. The Gail Haywood trained Mare can be forgiven for un-riding at the first over course and distance last time out after some good efforts which include a Taunton win over subsequent winner Icanmotor. Nicky Martin’s Mole Trap could also be well treated for Handicap debut, falling two out when beaten last time over course and distance in a strong Mares’ Novice Hurdle.
“Mole Trap is worth some money Each/Way at a huge price, and Hija also seems really good value for this weak Handicap.”
Bet 1: Hija Each/Way @ 8/1
Bet 2: Mole Trap Each/Way @ 14/1
15:55 – Novices’ Chase (Class 3)
Paul Nicholls will throw down a challenge for this 2m½f Novice Chase with Bagad Bihoue, who has won two from two over fences, although last time out was a long odds-on winner. Sam Twiston-Davies gets the ride as ever, with top weight of 11-8. Odds on again today, and the only real challenger will be Kayf Blanco, ridden by Richard Johnson.
“Kayf Blanco can put up a fight here but Bagad Bihoue should be too good and extend his unbeaten run over fences.”
Bet: Bagad Bihoue to Win @ 4/7
16:30 – Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (Class 4)
The Mares go at it again in the fifth race of the day, this time with the Novices’ over 2m1f. Foxy Act looks to have the strongest claims off of 11-2 top weight, only finishing 2 lengths behind Katy P in a more competitive race over the 2m5½f circuit here last time out. Page Fuller’s 7lbs claim should be enough to grant Chris Down with a winner here. A horse to look out for however is Phillip Dando’s Moontripper, who finished second over 2m2½f here in horribly wet conditions at the last meeting behind Undisputed, and can go well again at a weight of 10-10.
Bet: Foxy Act/Moontripper Forecast @ approx. 1/1
17:00 – Handicap Chase (Class 4)
Tim Vaughan’s Show’s Over gets the nod for this 2m½f Chase, finishing third on his last start behind the inform Market Road. One of two wins over fences have come at this distance, and being given a weight of 10-12, the former Irish hurdler should be able to get his head in front. A horse likely to be popular with on course punters is Ladies Dancing, who made all when scoring over hurdles at the last meeting here, but makes the switch back to fences today. Golan Dancer is another who could go well, placing behind some useful rivals at Exeter and Lingfield.
Bet 1: Show’s Over to Win @ 4/1 (NB)
Bet 2: Golan Dancer Each/Way @ 7/1
17:30 – National Hunt Flat Race (Class 6)
We end the Newton Abbot card with a 2m1f bumper for conditional and amateur riders, with the unraced Gertie Getaway looking the main contender in what is a weak flat race. Thomas Cheeseman takes the ride of the half-sister to Mac Steamy (Point-to-Point winner), with he mare running off 10-9 with a 5lbs from the aforementioned jockey. Trainer Philip Hobbs is respected with debutantes, and has an excellent record at the track. Point-to-Pointer Nobodydoesitbetter also looks an interesting entry for Nigel Twiston-Davies.
Bet: Gertie Getaway to Win @ 9/4
I hope I’ve helped you to pick out some winners on the card, and that everyone enjoys a profitable day in the Devonshire sunshine! Remember to follow me on Twitter @JakePriceTips for Tips from the evening meeting at Aintree which directly follows this one, and for updates throughout the day including the best of the action in the parade ring.