There is plenty of racing action ahead on Friday with five UK and Irish meetings taking place, leading into a truly bumper weekend of National Hunt action.
Today’s meetings come from Chepstow and Catterick over obstacles, alongside Lingfield’s all-weather card in the afternoon, before Dundalk and Newcastle take over in the evening.
Our Friday tips include a filly who made smooth progress on the all-weather back in the autumn and could now be underestimated back from a winter break.
- Newcastle 5.40 – Cariad @ 6/1
- Chepstow 4.05 – The Height Of Fame @ 16/1
- Catterick 2.40 – Pretending @ 11/8
An intriguing contest is in prospect in the talkSPORT Download The App Handicap (5.40) over the mile at Newcastle as last-time-out winners Mint Edition, Magicdollar and CARIAD (6/1) clash.
Mint Edition won in fine style here a fortnight ago for Ed Bethell, though perhaps the winning margin was exaggerated as those to the fore early on were treading water late in the race. He’s 5lb higher and with more on his plate now.
Magicdollar did well to score over this C&D himself in January, getting into some traffic woes despite facing only four rivals and ultimately doing well to switch around rivals and win with something to spare.
The filly Cariad was in fine fettle at Wolverhampton in the autumn, with two wins and a slender defeat from three starts at 1m½f/1m1½f after having been set some tough challenges in three turf runs previous to that.
She was unfortunate in her defeat, suffering a troubled passage off the home bend, but that latest win in October was very smooth and the form has been advertised handsomely since.
She won off a break at Dunstall Park in September and this daughter of Cityscape should have more to come. She’s 8lb higher for this first start of 2023 but the market seems to be suggesting this rests between Mint Edition and Magicdollar and that doesn’t really appear the case on paper.
There is some good racing this afternoon from Chepstow and the handicap hurdle over 2m3½f that is the penultimate race at the Welsh venue looks competitive.
Kieran Burke’s mare THE HEIGHT OF FAME (16/1) could be one worth chancing at a decent price in a Betfred Extra Place Race (four places) given her recent form.
She landed a quartet of wins at Fontwell, Newton Abbot and Exeter either side of a summer lay-off, rising 26lb in the ratings in doing so.
All four wins came at 2m5½f and on her sole start since, she may have found that three miles around Taunton just stretched her out too much as she was right in the argument three from home but faded to be fourth.
She drops back in distance now and races from that same mark of 105 and, in a wide open event where she races off bottom weight, she shouldn’t be discounted. Gavin Sheehan’s mount is on the Most Napped table via the Betfred Betfinder today and is a player with those four places to aim at.
Trainer Lucy Wadham can land the Andrew Dowson 50th Birthday Fillies’ Juvenile Hurdle (2.40) at Catterick with PRETENDING (11/8) on her second start over timber.
The Make Believe filly showed ability on the level for Sir Mark Prescott, winning a Southwell novice on the Tapeta in August, and made a decent start to her hurdles career at Doncaster (2m½f, good) in late December having relocated to this yard.
She was held in third on Town Moor but that was a hot race, with the front pair filling the front two spots back at Doncaster last weekend in a Listed Fillies’ Juvenile Hurdle.
Pretending may not face anything as good as that pair now and can notch her first jumping success in the hands of Bryony Frost.