Wincanton Preview: Buck and McCoy a Magic combination
Jockey AP McCoy has a tremendous strike rate when teaming up with trainer Neil Mulholland, and Buck Magic looks weighted to further enhance it in the 2m 6f handicap hurdle at Wincanton today (14:20).
Soon-to-be crowned 20-times champ McCoy has been successful on just under 46 per cent of his rides for the stable in the past 12 months, winning on 11 occasions and being placed five times from 24 mounts.
In Buck Magic he partners a horse who is extremely well-treated now switched back to hurdles following five runs over fences this season.
The nine-year-old had developed into a useful hurdler in 2012/13, winning a competitive 21-runner contest at Cheltenham off a mark of 118 before going on to land a 12-runner class 3 affair at Newbury off 129.
Buck Magic was also far from disgraced when 13th of 28 to Medinas in the 2013 running of the class 1 Coral Cup at the Cheltenham Festival off 134, and is now able to race in this class 3 contest off 124.
That is 5lb lower than when last successful and gives Buck Magic a huge chance from a handicapping perspective. He also has course and distance winning form to his name, and everything points to a huge run.
In the 2m handicap hurdle (15:20), Irish raider Redwood Boy could well have got in lightly.
Trained by Shark Hanlon, this gelding has only had six starts and shaped well last time out following 306 days on the sidelines to finish fifth of 14 to Colms Dream in a maiden hurdle at Downpatrick.
Prior to that he had run a very good race to finish fifth of 20 to Mydor in a handicap at Tipperary off a mark of 90, and the form of that race looks very strong in the context of this contest.
The winner, to whom Redwood Boy was conceding 11lb, has gone on to score twice since and is now rated 130, while the runner-up has also gone on to taste success.
It makes Redwood Boy’s current mark of 95 look exploitable, especially as he remains unexposed and open to further improvement.
The six-year-old is also entitled to strip much fitter for his recent comeback run and, with Paddy Brennan in the saddle, looks weighted to take all the beating.
14:20 Buck Magic (NAP)
14:50 One For The Boss
15:20 Redwood Boy (NB)
15:50 I’m In Charge
16:20 Merrion Square
16:50 Bon Enfant
17:20 Star Trouper