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Today’s Racing News: Restorer a bonkers price to bounce back at his beloved Chester

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It’s jumps action at Worcester today. Trainer Philip Hobbs could be one to follow. He has four entries across the card and has a 24% strike rate over both fences and hurdles at this venue. His best chance could be class dropper Across The Channel 5.04/1 in the 13:15.

At Chelmsford in the 18:30, jockey Daniel Tudhope takes the ride on Midheaven 4.57/2. This is his only ride of the day and trainer David O’Meara’s only entry on the Chelmsford card, and they have made the 197-mile journey. Together this season, they have a 19% strike rate.

Chester has received a touch of rain the last few days, which has seen a few non-runners (check your cards).

Backing trainer David Evans’ horses wearing a visor is profitable at GBP12.50 to a GBP1 level stake 16% strike rate, and today in the 14:05, he fits Bastogne 12.011/1 with the headgear for the first time.

Trainer Hugo Palmer has a 20% strike rate with horses running in a tongue-tie. Today he saddles Mr McCann 6.05/1 in the 14:40 at Chester.

Jockey Tom Marquand is operating at a 27% strike rate when riding for trainer William Haggas this season. Today he takes the ride on Hamish 6.05/1 in the 15:10 and Pride Of Glory 4.03/1 in the 15:40.

Horses for courses

This section highlights the best bets from horses that have won twice or more at today’s tracks.

13:15 Worcester – Robin Des Mana – Has won here twice (40%)
16:05 Worcester – Butler’s Brief – Has won here twice (100%)
18:00 Chelmsford – Last Date – Has won here three times (33%)

Weighted to go well

“Weighted to go well” highlights horses running that are more than 10lbs below their last winning handicap mark.

15:40 Chester – Restorer – Has won off 95 runs off 84
17:00 Chelmsford – Moveonup – Has won off 62 runs off 47
19:00 Chelmsford – Scale Force – Has won off 74 runs off 62

Furthest traveller

Today’s furthest traveller is trainer Tim Reed who has made the 232-mile journey to Worcester with his runner Largy Fix in the 13:15. The trainer has had one winner from three runners at this venue, and his runner has been supported from 14/1 into 17/2.

Race of the day

We head back to Chester in the hope of a change of luck on day two as we inspect the 14:40 Dee Stakes.

SBK11/8

EXC2.7

Trainer: Aidan O’Brien, Ireland
Jockey: Ryan Moore
Age: 3
Weight: 9st 2lbs
OR:

Star Of India will prove popular given the record of Aidan O’Brien in this contest (won six of the last nine), and the impressive Leopardstown Maiden scorer holds valid claims on just his third career start. He was rather disappointing at Newmarket on seasonal return, but to hold that against him may prove folly.

He is open to plenty of improvement and could surpass the level set by his rivals with that reappearance run under his belt. Still, he needs to bounce back, and he needs to prove his stamina for today’s longer trip, so there are questions to answer for one so short in the market.

SBK4/1

EXC4.8

Trainer: Hugo Palmer
Jockey: James Doyle
Age: 3
Weight: 9st 2lbs
OR:

Mr McCann has the opportunity for a soft lead today with no other pacemakers in the race, and this has likely been the target for his local connections. He’s fitted with the first time tongue-tie, which could bring out further improvement, and he has a form edge over rival Star Of India and is bred to appreciate this step up in distance.

He lacks a recent run, but there’s no doubt he will be primed for this today.

SBK6/1

EXC8.8

Trainer: Roger Varian
Jockey: Andrea Atzeni
Age: 3
Weight: 9st 2lbs
OR:

Dubai Poet won second time out last term, but that form will need significant improvement and his sole piece of form that makes him attractive still suggests he needs to take another step forward to score here.

Connections won this race last year, but it remains to be seen how Dubai Poet will handle a tight turning track such as this. He could take a good step forward or be out of the back of the field. It’s a toss-up.

Big race verdict

This is a good heat without having any stand out star in the field, and it could be that conditions favour Mr McCann most of all. He is a speedy type that this track should well suit, and with little pace pressure likely, the man of the moment, James Doyle, should be able to dictate the race from the front. There are lots in his favour today should his trainer have him spot-on for his seasonal return.

Ryan Moore is on fire at Chester

Betfair Ambassador Ryan Moore discusses his four rides at Chester on Thursday and it’s the first couple that look to be in with the best chances of victory…

Restore the faith in old timer

The 15:40 at Chester looks competitive enough, but it may pay to chance the veteran Restorer 21.020/1 each way on this return to Chester. He failed to handle the undulating track at Ripon last time when a never nearer sixth in a steadily run race after being slowly away from the gates. Still, he ran with credit twice prior, including when narrowly touched off over today’s trip at Kempton in a good Class 2 event.

SBK16/1

EXC22

Trainer: Ian Williams
Jockey: Richard Kingscote
Age: 10
Weight: 9st 3lbs
OR: 84

Today represents a drop into a Class 3 contest for the first time since September when fifth here off a handicap mark of 92 but the key to him looks to be the first time or the reapplication of the headgear. He has dropped down to a handicap mark of 84 and today has the visor reapplied after running the last twice without any headgear.

His form figures when running with headgear first time or reapplied read 1245. All of those runs came in Class 2 company off of higher handicap marks, and today’s softer surface should see him to good effect, given he stays further than this trip. He has a good record here at Chester, but it’s the visor that could be key, and four of his six wins have come over today’s trip and he is reunited with Richard Kingscote.

Final Word – Chester draw

This Chester meeting is always strange, with the draw playing such a big part in races over 5f-1m, so is it no surprise that some trainers withdraw their runners if drawn out in the car park? Or should it be the case that the BHA should be investigating the matter?It’s a tough one, but it happens every year. On Wednesday, we saw that Animal Instinct (drawn ten) was withdrawn due to the unsuitable ground but is confirmed to run on Friday when conveniently drawn in stall three.Last season there was plenty of conversation about high drawn runners being withdrawn when there was no change in the going.There was also a comment from trainer Hugo Palmer in the Racing Post which said:”I think Glorious Angel’s come forward from her debut, but she’s got a terrible draw. She’s drawn even worse in the maiden on Thursday, so we’re going to run here.”Many horses at this Chester meeting are double entered, which is highly likely because of the draw. If they don’t fancy one draw, they can pull out and get the better one-two days later.I have no problem with it. It’s good training and race planning, but is it morally correct to do so? And is this another plague of the fact that there are too many races in a season?Let me know your thoughts.Until tomorrow, be lucky.Follow Daryl Carter on Twitter @DarylCarter7

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