Huntingdon Preview: Bob Tucker can cash-in on class drop

Bob Tucker has shaped well in two starts over fences and can take advantage of a drop in grade to open his account over the larger obstacles in the 3m novices’ handicap chase at Huntingdon today (3.00).

The gelding had progressive form over hurdles last season when trained by Brendan Powell, winning at Worcester and Wincanton to achieve a top rating of 120.

The eight-year-old has had his attentions switched to fences this season after joining Charlie Longdson, and run really well in two starts.

In the first of those Bob Tucker was beaten just 1 1/2 length into third behind Generous Ransom in a class 3 contest at Sandown off his current mark of 118.

The form of that race looks strong as the winner has gone on to land a competitive class 2 contest at Cheltenham and is now rated 136, and the second and fifth home have also gone on to taste success.

Bob Tucker backed that up with a decent fourth to Smiles For Miles at Newbury last month in another class 3 contest when ridden too aggressively by 5lb claimer Charlie Deutsch and now gets the professional services of Noel Fehily in the saddle.

Fehily was on-board when the son of Brian Boru finished third at Sandown, and a repeat of that run would make Bob Tucker extremely difficult to beat now dropped into class 4 company.
In the 3m 2f handicap hurdle that opens proceedings (1.55), Imperial Vic can go well at a decent price having fallen to a dangerous mark.

The Harriet Bethell trained gelding had some useful form over the smaller obstacles in 2012/13 when winning three times, and was rated 129 when finishing third to the smart Utopie Des Bordes at Perth.

The 10-year-old then had his attentions switched to chasing, and after winning on debut by 10 lengths finished an excellent neck second to theGreen Flag at Kelso off an official rating of 135.

Imperial Vic has since run well to be placed on four further occasions, including off a rating of 137, and is now able to run off a hurdles mark of just 110.

That makes the son of Old Vic look very well-treated on the pick of his form, especially with Jonathan England in the saddle taking another 3lb off his back.

Imperial Vic should also no be spot on to do himself justice after two runs this season, and if adopting the front running tactics that have served him well in the past could take some pegging back on a sharp track which should suit.

1.55: Imperial Vic (NB)
2.25: Harristown
3.00: Bob Tucker (NAP)
3.35: Chatez
4.10: Ultimatum Du Roy
4.40: Angel Face