Wild West Wind jumps off the page in the 3.15 at Haydock on Saturday. The nine-year-old should relish the heavy ground on Merseyside, and is fancied to make amends for a crashing fall when well-backed for last month’s Welsh National at Chepstow.
Trainer Tom George and jockey Adrian Heskin have endured a succession of big race disappointments over the past year, including the Welsh National when Wild West Wind was travelling powerfully at the head of affairs only to take a crashing fall under Heskin, who also came off stable stars Singlefarmpayment and The Worlds End when challenging in the Ladbroke Trophy and Albert Bartlett respectively, and let's hope that he stays in the saddle this time on Wild West Wind.
A small field of eight (due to the late defection of Daklondike) jumping soft fences on heavy ground should be ideal for the lightly-raced and unexposed Wild West Wind. Of the rest, top weight Blaklion concedes plenty of weight all round while The Dutchman has been hit hard by the handicapper for his recent course win, Three Faces West represents a misfiring stable leaving the inconsistent Silsol as the main danger in an interesting renewal of this valuable contest.