15.25 Aintree: Victor Hewgo can notch up another victory
Victor Hewgo has a very progressive profile and looks the one to side with on his handicap debut.
Keith Reveley’s gelding was a useful hurdler who has shown even better form since going chasing, winning two of his four starts.
However, it can be argued that his two best runs have come when finishing runner-up.
The first of those won on his chasing debut at Doncaster where he went down by just a neck to Western Warhorse, and that one subsequently went on to win the Arkle Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
On the second occasion he was beaten just 3/4 of a length by Holywell in a 3m contest at the same track.
The winner, who he met on level terms, went on to win at the Cheltenham Festival off a mark of 145 and bolted up here yesterday off an official rating of 157.
That is very strong form which suggests Victor Hewgo has got in lightly in this off an opening mark of just 139.
With conditions fine, and James Reveley in the saddle, he looks sure to take all the beating on a track which looks tailor-made for him.
Of those at bigger odds, the David Pipe trained Wetak is worth considering.
The seven-year-old has some decent form to his name when trained in France and has run better than his form figures suggest in two runs since joining Pipe.
On the first of those he travelled well until weakening and coming to grief three from home at Ascot, and he then stepped up significantly on that effort when ninth of 23 to stable companion
Ballynagour in the Byrne Group Plate at the Cheltenham Festival.
The gelding lost his place at the seventh in the latter but then stayed on nicely to be beaten 12 3/4 lengths.
The handicapper has since dropped him another 1lb, and having started life off in this country on a rating of 143 and is now running off just 137.
That entitles him to plenty of respect on the pick of his form, especially if building on his latest run.