Exeter and Fakenham previews: The Tourard Man can rule for King
David Metcalf | May 3, 2016
The Tourard Man ticks all the right boxes at Exeter
The Tourard Man looks decent value to take advantage of a drop in the weights and land the 2m 7f handicap on this evening’s card at Exeter (18.45).
Trained by Alan King, the gelding scored twice over the obstacles in 2014/15 and ran some cracking races in defeat in ultra-competitive handicaps.
They included a 2 1/3 length third of 23 to Call The Cops in the Pertemps Final at the Cheltenham Festival off a mark of 135, and an excellent fifth of 21 to Taglietelle in a class 1 contest at Aintree off 139.
The Tourard Man is now able to race in this class lower grade 3 affair off 132, and that gives him major claims from a handicapping perspective.
The 10-year-old also comes into the contest on the back of an eye-catching effort at Ascot when sixth of 16 to Taj Badalandabad.
After being held-up well off the pace, The Tourard Man made stealthy headway to be on the heels of the leaders travelling strongly three out before weakening late on to be beaten 12 1/2 lengths.
It was a much improve run after some below par efforts, and if building on it The Tourard Man looks weighted to take all the beating in what isn’t the strongest of contests for the grade.
Next Sensation can cash-in on class drop
In the 2m 3f handicap chase (19.15), Next Sensation can defy top weight to land the spoils now eased significantly in grade.
The Michael Scudamore trained gelding ran a stormer to finish fourth in 2014 running of the Grand Annual at the Cheltenham Festival when ridden far too aggressively and only weakening close home to be beaten just 1 3/4 length by Savello.
Next Sensation then failed to fire in his next five starts before bouncing back to form with a vengeance to land the 2015 renewal in terrific style.
The nine-year-old was given superb front running ride by Tom Scudamore, and stayed on strongly after the last to beat Eastlake by four lengths off a mark of 143.
Next Sensation got put up to 151 for that success, but is now able to race off a reduced rating of just 135.
It gives the son of Brian Boru outstanding claims at the weights, especially now pitched into class 3 company for the first time in over three years, and the drying ground is also a big plus.
18.45: The Tourard Man (NAP)
19.15: Next Sensation (NB)
19.45: On Alberts Head
20.15: Swoop To Conquer
Wild about the chances of Thomas in Norfolk National at Fakenham
Thomas Wild will relish the drying ground at Fakenham and can defy top weight to land the 3m 5f Norfolk National (15.30).
The Philip Hobbs trained 11-year-old showed he was a useful stayer on a decent surface when landing a 3m 6f contest at Exeter 12 months ago easing down by three lengths.
Thomas Wild went on to score at Stratford when showing a game attitude to beat Alberobello by 1/2 length off a mark of 121, and is now able to race off just 3lb higher.
The gelding also comes into the contest on the back of fine staying on third of 16 to Any Currency in a competitive affair at Cheltenham, and that form reads extremely well in the context of this contest.
Another plus is that Thomas Wild goes extremely well for jockey Micheal Nolan, and everything points to a huge run.
Persian Breeze can blow away rivals on handicap debut
In the 2m 4f handicap hurdle (15.00), Persian Breeze is a fascinating contender off what looks a handy mark.
The filly was a fair maiden on the flat when trained by John Gosden, and has shaped nicely in four starts over hurdles since joining Lucy Wadham.
They include a fourth at this venue and a sixth of 15 to Ozzie The Oscar in a decent contest at Newbury two starts back.
Although eventually beaten 28 lengths in the latter, Persian Breeze made good headway to chase the leaders three from home before weakening approaching the last and was not knocked about.
The four-year-old had two rivals rated 122 and 123 going into the contest in behind, and that makes opening mark of 100 for Persian Breeze look exploitable.
Persian Breeze also looks the type who has been brought along with handicaps in mind, and hails from a yard which has a 33 per cent strike rate with its runners at the track in the past 12 months.
14.00: Kudu Country
15.00: Persian Breeze (NB)
15.30: Thomas Wild (NAP)
16.05: In Fairness