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Lancashire Telegraph racing column
7:41am Monday 10th February 2014 in Sport
Gold Show must have an excellent chance of winning over hurdles at the fifth attempt when she is sent into battle at Catterick.
The Edwin Tuer-trained mare has hardly sent shockwaves throughout the racing world since her transition from moderate Flat performer to novice hurdler.
That said, her most recent effort over course and distance must give Tuer great optimism of a big show in the Cheltenham Preview Evening February 28th Handicap Hurdle.
Gold Show travelled kindly for regular jockey Tony Kelly, having previously unluckily been brought down at Wetherby over Christmas, and was only defeated by Getabuzz in a strongly-run encounter.
Although the form, at least on first glance, did not look anything special, the winner has since dotted up at Sedgefield, while the well-held third horse home, Mohawk Ridge, breezed 10 lengths clear at Carlisle on Wednesday.
Gold Show has shown a fondness for heavy ground, so there will be no issues on that score, while it is unlikely this race is teeming with quality.
Cheltenham Festival winner Son Of Flicka looks the one in the Weatherbys Hamilton Insurance Novices' Limited Handicap Chase.
It seems an age since the 10-year-old defeated Get Me Out Of Here by three and a half lengths in the Coral Cup in March 2012, such was his steady decline for previous connections.
Now with North Yorkshire trainer Tony Coyle, Son Of Flicka has made a satisfactory start back under the chasing regime and was a good second over course and distance on New Year's Day.
Coyle's inmate jumped pretty well that day and only went down by a length and a half to Dungeel, who looks useful.
Son Of Flicka is probably unlikely to ever match his hurdling achievements over fences, but he has winning form on soft ground and is clearly coming back to something like a decent level of form.
Consistency has never really been Triggerman's forte, but those who rise from beneath the parapet may reap handsome rewards in the Weatherbys Private Banking Handicap Chase.
The 12-year-old has slithered down the ratings following a losing run of form which stretches back to April 2011, when he won a tight handicap chase at Cheltenham off a mark of 132.
Philip Hobbs' inmate is 13lb lower for this assignment, which would probably be a moot point had he not shaped with a modicum of hope in a better race than this at Exeter last month.
Despite being 3lb out of the weights, Triggerman stayed on for fourth spot in a three-mile veterans' handicap chase on heavy ground.
With conditions likely to be similarly demanding in North Yorkshire, allied to the fact he has gone down another 3lb in the weights, Hobbs' inmate can conclusively prove that the fires still burn brightly.
Invicta Lake's promising run at Ascot in December bodes well ahead of the Sussex Sign Company Handicap Hurdle at Plumpton, while Freckle Face, an impressive scorer at Towcester last month, can carry on the good work in the Weatherbys Private Banking Handicap Chase.
Good Flat racing at Wolverhampton, where Big Baz is respected in the feature race.
William Muir's four-year-old, a half-brother to the Group One-wining Giofra, has not achieved as much as others in the field, but he is unbeaten in two starts and has a lovely profile.
A leviathan of a horse, the gelded son of Pivotal looked good on his debut at Lingfield in December when he charged nearly three lengths clear.
He then took within his stride the step up to eight and a half furlongs with a clean-cut success over Canon Law.
Big Baz will almost certainly improve for this extra trip and is in receipt of plenty of weight from many of the alleged protagonists of the coral.co.uk Best Odds Guaranteed On Racing Handicap.
Now might be the time to get involved in Rightcar, who runs in the Compare Bookmakers At bookmakers.co.uk Handicap.
The highly-tried seven-year-old is obviously no great shakes, but he is back at something like a workable mark.
Rightcar's name was scribbled into a few notebooks over six furlongs at Kempton last week when he overcame a troubled passage from a wide berth to finish a staying-on fourth.
The gelded son of Bertolini is 3lb lower on his return to action and will be unfazed by the prospect of dropping down to five furlongs as he has twice won over course and distance.
Epic Battle is probably high enough in the weights for the Coral App Download From The App Store Handicap, but he faces a slightly easier challenge than on his last two outings.
The four-year-old gelding drops a couple of grades for this assignment, despite only having been beaten under three lengths in a tough handicap here on Boxing Day.
CATTERICK: 1.50 I Need Gold, 2.20 GOLD SHOW (NAP), 2.50 Son Of Flicka, 3.20 De Chissler, 3.50 Triggerman, 4.20 Star Lily.
PLUMPTON: 1.35 Slipper Satin, 2.05 Third Intention, 2.40 Clonusker, 3.10 Invicta Lake, 3.40 Freckle Face, 4.10 Hold The Bucks, 4.40 Millicent Silver.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 2.30 Rightcar, 3.00 Where's Reiley, 3.30 Archive, 4.00 Big Baz, 4.30 Epic Battle, 5.00 Filament Of Gold, 5.30 Sweet Vintage
DOUBLE: Gold Show and Triggerman.
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