Saturday Selections

The Badger Ales Trophy Handicap Chase – Wincanton 3.35

It’s hardly original, however, El Bandit looks a good bet at Wincanton in Saturday.

The lightly-raced seven-year-old was a Grade 2 winner over hurdles and will have been trained to the minute following 17 months on the sidelines.

His record on good ground reads 6311111101. While his record over trips in excess of 3m reads 7101.

He won first time out in 2016 and although his lack of experience is an obvious negative, I am in no doubt whatsoever that his ten-time champion trainer, who has a fine record in this race, will have schooled his charge on numerous occasions in preparation for this contest.

El Bandit has scope for significant improvement in this sphere.

SELECTION: El Bandit 6/1 (Betfair, Paddy Power, Boylesports)


Rewards4Racing Handicap Chase – Aintree 2.40

Hell’s Kitchen looks overpriced should he turn up at Aintree on Saturday.

Harry Fry’s lightly raced eight-year-old is the last horse to get the better of Cheltenham Festival winner Mister Whitaker, who shot to the head of the antepost betting for the BetVictor Gold Cup following a smart reappearance success in the Colin Parker Memorial Chase at Carlisle last weekend.

It is fair to say that the JP McManus owned gelding has his quirks. However, he has also displayed significant potential on the few occasions that he has made it to the racetrack, and a mark of 145 may underestimate his ability on a line through his aforementioned Kempton victim.

It should also be noted that the fourth home that day, the Peter Bowen trained Beggar’s Wishes, has since rattled-up a hat-trick, which gives the form further substance.

Sent off the 9/2 favourite for a competitive handicap at Leopardstown when last seen in February, Hell’s Kitchen made a mistake at the fourth last fence as the race was beginning in earnest. Therefore, I am happy to overlook that effort and instead focus on his fine showing at Kempton.

A reproduction of that effort would see him go very close on Saturday.

SELECTION: Hell’s Kitchen 8/1 (William Hill)


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