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The Bet Victor racing column
9:00am Friday 21st February 2014 in Sport
Warwick host a competitive card this afternoon on ground which is forecast as being good to soft.
Cogry (2.10) is one of three winners in the opening Novices’ Hurdle, and must carry a 7lb penalty as a result, but he has been steadily improving with his racing and can give the weight to Super Lunar and Georgie Lad a couple of unexposed types from top yards.
The selection has a bit to find with David Pipe’s Count Danilo, using Saffron Wells a yardstick, but he must go close with the Nigel Twiston-Davies yard back amongst the winners of late.
Water Wagtail has been given a chance by the handicapper but I’m not convinced an extended 3miles will suit and the form of the Emma Lavelle yard remains a concern at the time of writing.
Mighty Mobb (3.10) is a son of Accordion whose progeny, invariably, need decent ground and he is taken to leave his heavy ground form behind on this better surface for Philip Hobbs.
Barton Gift was a revelation in first time blinkers at Exeter last time but is 19lb higher and the handicapper might have caught up with him although today’s better ground is certainly no inconvenience.
The feature event is the 2m 4f Handicap Chase with Cheltenham hopeful Uxizandre putting his Festival credentials on the line.
The Alan King charge is unbeaten in two starts over fences this season but has been off the track since scoring at Plumpton back in November.
He faces a tough task giving weight away to his five opponents but if he is to take his chance in the JLT Novices’ Chase next month he must go close.
No Planning is 8lb higher than when scoring at Wetherby last time but I am sweet on the chances of Persian Snow (3.40) who travelled powerfully and jumped well over today’s C&D earlier in the month. The selection has always promised to make up into a decent chaser and he receives 18lbs from Uxizandre in what is a top class race.
The ground is heavy but raceable at Exeter and Legacy Gold (3.50) can give a stone and a beating to her three rivals for David Pipe but from a punting angle Wilton Milan (4.20) is of more interest and can defy top weight in the feature for Paul Nicholls despite the fact that he has yet to complete the course in three starts so far this season!
A winning pointer the selection has had his fair share of misfortune so far this term and fell four out when, seemingly, going best at Wincanton last month. This step up in trip should suit and he is still young enough to make his mark in decent company going forward.
The hope is it’s a very good day for Philip Hobbs as Thomas Wild (4.50) gets the vote in the finale despite returning from a 283 day lay-off for the Somerset handler.
Fitness is unlikely to be an issue for a horse who has run well fresh in the past and this thorough stayer can go close with drying ground of no concern. Michael Nolan is his regular jockey and has ridden him on both previous career wins. Let’s hope the hat-trick beckons.
At Thurles Caoimhe’s Delight (4.15) is worth another try at 3 miles in the feature Mares’ Chase as she has been running consistently well over 2m 4f of late and connections look to have found an ideal opportunity for her. If her stamina was guaranteed she would be something to bet on.
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