Claimantakinforgan can take the glory in Scottish Champion Hurdle
Cian Carroll | 21 April 2018
ITV racing preview and tips for Newbury and Ayr
The racing season moves into that lovely point where there’s a decent mixture of both National Hunt and Flat racing to satisfy everyone’s taste.
Saturday is no different with flat action from Newbury and jumps from Ayr in Scotland. The ITV racing crew will be at both courses to pick up the pace.
And the Coral News Team will be right alongside them – in spirit only – to preview the major renewals and provide tips for all eight races.
First of a big double for Henderson?
One of the most interesting races of the day comes from Ayr and the Scottish Champion Hurdle. The field looks highly competitive with a number of runners coming off reasonably decent Cheltenham performances.
One of those is Nicky Henderson’s Claimantakinforgan. The six-year-old started the season on fire with impressive wins at Newbury and Ascot.
However, a poor performance at Musselburgh in February cooled the jets a little. But he put in a sterling showing in the Supreme Novices at Prestbury Park, finishing fifth to Summerville Boy.
It was soft ground that day and Henderson reckons his charge will enjoy these good conditions even more. He’s a big price at the current odds.
Scottish National could be wrapped up
Henderson could have a big say in the major renewals in Ayrshire. Another charge – Gold Present – goes in the Scottish Grand National.
The eight-year-old missed the Aintree National due to the soft conditions. But the fine recent whether all over the UK has provided connections with the hope that he can put in a good run.
Before Cheltenham he’d won at both Newbury and Ascot, beating Frodon by 3L in the Silver Cup Handicap Chase. Conditions in both of those were similar to how they’ll be at Ayr.
He stays all day and jumps well and could be a big player in this 3m 7f renewal.
Stoute’s novice star is back
As short-priced favourites go, it doesn’t get much more solid than Expert Eye in the Greatwood Greenham Stakes at Newbury.
Sir Michael Stoute’s star makes his seasonal reappearance after an odd end to last year’s campaign. Wins at Goodwood and Newbury last summer was followed by a 70-odd day break.
It all went horribly wrong in the Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket in October as the three-year-old finished last from nine runners. He’d also came back lame at the end of the race.
But with a good winter under his belt, connections are optimistic of a big season ahead. He’s undoubtedly the classiest horse in this Group 3 7f renewal. And if all goes well, should hose up.
ITV Racing Tips:
1:45 Ayr – Vaniteaux
2:00 Newbury – Call To Mind
2:20 Ayr – Shades Of Midnight
2:35 Newbury – Gavota
2:55 Ayr – Claimantakinforgan
3:10 Newbury – Expert Eye
3:30 Ayr – Cobra De Mai
3:45 Newbury – Leader Writer
4:10 Ayr – Gold Present
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing