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14:40 Haydock

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Sky Bet Cheltenham Non-Runner No Bet Handicap Hurdle

  • Prize money: £21124
  • 3m 0f 58y
  • Class 3
  • 14 runners
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Sky Bet Cheltenham Non-Runner No Bet Handicap Hurdle

Runners: 14 runners

Type: Hurdle Turf

Surface: Turf

Weather: Light rain

Form: 52/2P3 CD

Last run: 38 days

W: 12st 0lb

10 yo Gelding

OR: 135

Form & Verdict

10yo who has run three times over fences this season, following a long absence, and is yet to prove he retains his old ability; however, he could be suited by today's return to hurdling and is 3lb lower than when going very close in the 2022 Pertemps Final at Cheltenham; not ruled out.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

9th

3

24th Feb 2024

Heavy

2m 7f 131y

Class 2

15:08 Chepstow

Alaphilippe

11st 10lb

J: Paddy Brennan

T: Fergal O’Brien

Won bumper on heavy; very nearly won Pertemps Final at Cheltenham (3m, soft) in 2022 in first-time tongue-tie, which has been kept since; absent 588 days before this season and, after an arguably satisfactory chase debut on return, he's not shone since; 16-1 and back over hurdles when unseating on latest start, going okay at the time but others are higher up the list.

12/1

0

4

21st Jan 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 0y

Class 2

14:25 Lingfield

Alaphilippe

11st 5lb

J: Paddy Brennan

T: Fergal O’Brien

Hasn't cut the mustard in three chase runs this season following a long absence; can make a case on his old hurdle form as he very nearly won the 3m handicap at the 2022 Cheltenham Festival when 3lb higher.

14/1

Form: 07-231 C

Last run: 21 days

W: 11st 10lb

5 yo Gelding

OR: 131

Form & Verdict

Lightly raced 5yo who was an easy winner when upped in trip over 2m3f here (heavy) three weeks ago; he's 10lb higher in a more competitive race today and needs to prove his stamina, but his dam was a French 3m cross-country chase winner and he's in good hands to continue to progress.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

2

17th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 0f 58y

Class 2

15:50 Haydock

Punta Del Este

11st 12lb

J: Tristan Durrell

T: Dan Skelton

Suited by racing beyond 2m for the first time when wide-margin winner of 2m3f course handicap (heavy) seven weeks ago; raised 10lb but there should be more to come as his stamina is drawn out; a must for the shortlist.

4/1

1st

6

30th Dec 2023

Heavy

2m 2f 191y

Class 3

14:35 Haydock

Punta Del Este

11st 0lb

J: Tristan Durrell

T: Dan Skelton

in touch with leaders, headway and prominent 5th, went second 6th, mistake 7th

3/1

OUR TIP

Form: 12-53U

Last run: 28 days

W: 11st 8lb

10 yo Gelding

OR: 129

Form & Verdict

10yo who is lightly raced for his age; has struggled over fences this season but he's on a competitive mark on last spring's 2m4f hurdle form, and there's stamina in his pedigree; not discounted now back hurdling.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

8th

6

24th Feb 2024

Heavy

2m 7f 131y

Class 2

15:08 Chepstow

Conkwell Legend

11st 4lb

J: James Best

T: Neil Mulholland

Came to grief in three of his five races over fences, but he'd just taken the lead at Exeter (3m, heavy) 13 days ago when falling three out; judged on that, he needs considering on this return to hurdling.

8/1

14

11th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 0f 54y

Class 2

16:35 Exeter

Conkwell Legend

10st 3lb

J: Richie McLernon

T: Neil Mulholland

Dual hurdle winner but came to grief in the very early stages of two of his four chasing attempts and was well beaten when completing the other two races (albeit one in a Grade 2); still unexposed over 3m but needs to get his act together over fences.

16/1

Form: 110-P6 D

Last run: 28 days

W: 11st 7lb

11 yo Gelding

OR: 128

Form & Verdict

Won two in a row for Sandy Thomson last season and runs off last winning mark; however, tailed off last February on final run for that yard and there's been no return to form on this 11yo's two starts for this stable.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

4

21st Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 84y

Class 3

14:35 Doncaster

Storm Nelson

11st 12lb

J: Charlie Maggs

T: Olly Williams

led, prominent after 1st

25/1

9th

7

25th Jan 2024

Good

3m 1f 10y

Class 2

15:45 Huntingdon

Storm Nelson

10st 11lb

J: Charlie Maggs

T: Olly Williams

Back on his most recent winning mark, achieved when beating three rivals at Ayr (3m, heavy) last January, but nowhere near that form in three runs since, the last twice for a new yard; can only watch.

50/1

Form: 4161-U CD

Last run: 130 days

W: 11st 6lb

7 yo Gelding

OR: 127

Form & Verdict

Front-runner who made it 7-11 in handicap hurdles when winning over C&D (good to soft) last February; has also won on soft; lacked fluency and fell two out on his chase/seasonal debut at Kelso in September, but was running a fair race and he could have more to offer now back hurdling; chance.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1st

2

21st Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 84y

Class 3

14:35 Doncaster

Johnsons Blue

12st 0lb

J: Jamie Hamilton

T: Mark Walford

took keen hold, prominent, led after 1st

7/2

0

2

12th Sep 2023

Good

2m 7f 96y

Class 3

17:35 Kelso

Johnsons Blue

11st 4lb

J: Jamie Hamilton

T: Mark Walford

raced in second, awkward jump 2nd, steadied and slow jump 10th, not fluent 13th, 3 lengths down when mistake and unseated 2 out

6/4

Form: 3U-155 D

Last run: 42 days

W: 11st 3lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 124

Form & Verdict

Lightly raced 6yo who was a clear winner at Aintree (3m, good to soft) in October on reappearance; has also won on soft; of interest on the Aintree form but he's finished merely fifth the next twice and has to raise his game.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

8

10th Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 52y

Class 3

13:30 Newbury

Equinus

11st 1lb

J: Sam Twiston-Davies

T: Nigel Twiston-Davies

Won at Ffos Las (2m4f, soft) last January and in good style on his reappearance at Aintree (3m, good to soft) in October; of interest on that Aintree win but he's finished merely fifth the last twice; has to raise his game.

6/1

Form: 11

Last run: 40 days

W: 11st 3lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 124

Form & Verdict

Point winner (3m, yielding) who is 3-3 following hurdle wins in Hexham maiden (2m4f, heavy) and Ayr novice (2m5f, soft); improvement needed to defy opening mark in this competitive race but he's unexposed and could be a useful staying prospect; has had wind op since last time; tongue-tie goes on.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

5

17th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 0f 58y

Class 1

16:25 Haydock

Inox Allen

11st 2lb

J: Patrick Wadge

T: Lucinda Russell

Won sole point start last May (3m, yielding) and he's 2-2 under rules after hurdle wins at Hexham (2m4f, heavy) and Ayr (2m5f, soft); has had wind op since and a tongue-tie goes on; others have more substance to their form but stamina looks to be a strong suit and he's in good hands to progress.

9/1

1st

1

11th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 5f 91y

Class 4

14:20 Ayr

Inox Allen

11st 7lb

J: Patrick Wadge

T: Lucinda Russell

£40,000 purchase in May after winning an ordinary Irish point (3m, yielding); ridden out to win a moderately run maiden hurdle at Hexham on rules debut last month (2m4f, heavy; modest race); should progressive and an obvious contender.

11/2

Form: 090-43

Last run: 25 days

W: 11st 1lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 122

Form & Verdict

Ex-Gordon Elliott 8yo who kept on for fairly encouraging fourth on stable debut at Wetherby (2m3f, heavy) in November; however, he was well beaten back there (2m5f, soft) on Boxing Day and has to leave that latest run well behind now in first-time cheekpieces (replacing blinkers).

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1

2nd Feb 2024

Soft

3m 1f 71y

Class 4

15:35 Catterick

Sams Choice

12st 2lb

J: William Maggs

T: Rebecca Menzies

in touch with leaders, outpaced before 2 out, 9 lengths fourth when fell last

4/1

Form: 3-135

Last run: 35 days

W: 11st 0lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 121

Form & Verdict

3m point winner who scored on hurdle debut at Uttoxeter (2m4f, good to soft) in October before good third at Warwick (2m5f, soft); kept on for near-11l fifth in Grade 2 novice at Cheltenham (3m, soft) last month, when there was a muddling gallop and he got outpaced as others quickened; should get more of an end-to-end gallop in today's scenario, which is likely to play to his strengths, and this unexposed 6yo is open to improvement on handicap debut.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

7

17th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 0f 58y

Class 2

15:50 Haydock

Yes Day

11st 2lb

J: Jonjo O’Neill Jr

T: Jonjo O’Neill

Quite a useful novice hurdler who ran a solid race under a penalty when runner-up at Catterick (extended 2m3f, soft) 24 days ago; proved his stamina for 3m when fifth in Cheltenham Grade 2 novice on penultimate start and he's very much unexposed now handicapping for a stable in good form.

6/1

2nd

3

24th Jan 2024

Soft

2m 3f 66y

Class 4

13:20 Catterick

Yes Day

11st 9lb

J: Jonjo O’Neill Jr

T: Jonjo O’Neill

Landed a 2m4f Uttoxeter maiden on his hurdles debut and has taken his form up a notch since, posting a good fifth in Cheltenham Grade 2 (3m) last month; he holds leading form claims.

13/8

Form: 321

Last run: 24 days

W: 11st 0lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 121

Form & Verdict

3m point winner who has improved with each of his three runs in maiden hurdles, most recently winning easily at Chepstow (2m3f, soft); brings potential to this handicap debut and could have a part to play.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

6th

11

24th Feb 2024

Heavy

2m 7f 131y

Class 2

15:08 Chepstow

Minella Blueway

10st 8lb

J: Isabel Williams

T: Evan Williams

Irish maiden point winner on heavy; consistent form in his four runs over hurdles; 13l third of four on handicap debut here (2m3f, heavy) one month ago showed that improvement is needed but it's not forgotten how impressive he was in a maiden over that same C&D (soft) time before; early days and new trip, so it will be interesting to see his strength in the betting.

10/1

3rd

7

24th Jan 2024

Soft

2m 3f 100y

Class 3

15:10 Chepstow

Minella Blueway

10st 9lb

J: Adam Wedge

T: Evan Williams

Irish point winner who delivered on earlier hurdling promise when drawing clear to win comfortably by 11l over C&D (soft) four weeks ago; faces stronger opposition on today's handicap debut but has plenty of scope for further progress.

3/1

Form: 6-4513

Last run: 24 days

W: 10st 13lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 120

Form & Verdict

Won at Carlisle (2m3f, good to soft) last February and back on the scoresheet at Bangor (2m7f, heavy) last month; another good run when third to Classic Concorde at Chepstow (2m7f, soft) 12 days later; improvement needed in this warm race but he's only six and is not ruled out each-way.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

14

3rd Feb 2024

Soft

2m 7f 98y

Class 1

15:10 Sandown

Tanganyika

10st 4lb

J: Charlie Deutsch

T: Venetia Williams

Won at Carlisle (2m3f) last February and Bangor (2m7f, heavy) in December; while penultimate start was creditable, he needs to perform much better than at Lingfield 13 days ago.

16/1

5th

10

21st Jan 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 0y

Class 2

14:25 Lingfield

Tanganyika

10st 4lb

J: Charlie Deutsch

T: Venetia Williams

Had nothing in hand when successful at Bangor (2m7f, heavy) and off 4lb higher he was then only third to Classic Concorde at Chepstow; further 2lb rise for that defeat seems harsh.

14/1

Form: -41112 D

Last run: 28 days

W: 10st 12lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 119

Form & Verdict

Completed a hat-trick (2m7f/3m1f, soft/good to soft) in October and another good run when second of six over this C&D (heavy) four weeks ago; today's hotter company demands another step forward but this progressive 8yo holds each-way possibilities.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

6th

8

17th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 0f 58y

Class 2

15:50 Haydock

Our Sam

11st 0lb

J: Leah Noreci

T: James Moffatt

7yo who completed a hat-trick in the first half of the season and ran another fine race when second of six over C&D (heavy) just before Christmas; there's no reason why he won't give his running but he is up against a few progressive types here.

14/1

2nd

5

23rd Dec 2023

Soft

3m 0f 58y

Class 3

15:15 Haydock

Our Sam

11st 0lb

J: Charlotte Jones

T: James Moffatt

in touch with leaders, went second 4 out, kept on but no impression from 3 out

2/1

Form: 111411 D

Last run: 24 days

W: 10st 12lb

11 yo Gelding

OR: 119

Form & Verdict

Made it five wins from his last six starts when scoring at Chepstow (2m7f, soft) over Christmas; has also won on good/good to soft; continues to climb the weights and today's task is more demanding, but his latest form has been franked and this thriving 11yo has to be respected.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1st

12

24th Feb 2024

Heavy

2m 7f 131y

Class 2

15:08 Chepstow

Classic Concorde

10st 7lb

J: Connor Brace

T: David Brace

Often leads; five wins last August-December, the last of which was over C&D (soft) at Christmas; up a further 7lb to another career-high mark at Huntingdon (good to soft) one month ago when that superb sequence came to an end and the scale of his defeat was concerning; needs to bounce back with another career best, aged 11.

20/1

10th

13

25th Jan 2024

Good

3m 1f 10y

Class 2

15:45 Huntingdon

Classic Concorde

10st 2lb

J: Connor Brace

T: David Brace

Often leads; has had a marvellous spell over hurdles and was winning for the fifth time in six outings since August when successful at Chepstow after Christmas (2m7f, soft; also won on good); up a further 7lb to another career-high mark and this asks for yet more.

8/1

Form: 303-21

Last run: 22 days

W: 10st 10lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 117

Form & Verdict

Runner-up on his stable and handicap debut at Newcastle (2m1f, good to soft) in November and comfortably went one better when upped in trip at Kelso (2m6f, soft) three weeks ago; a 7lb rise isn't harsh and this very lightly raced 6yo could have more to offer over staying trips; lots to like.

Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

5th

14

4th Feb 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 180y

Class 2

15:00 Musselburgh

Imaginary Dragon

10st 2lb

J: Sean Quinlan

T: Sandy Thomson

Lightly raced 6yo; just two runs for this yard, when second on handicap debut at Newcastle (2m1f, good to soft) and hammering his seven rivals when upped to 3m at Kelso (soft); 7lb rise may underestimate what he did last time and he is open to further improvement.

10/1

1st

3

29th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 6f 151y

Class 3

12:45 Kelso

Imaginary Dragon

11st 2lb

J: Ryan Mania

T: Sandy Thomson

Lightly raced 5yo who showed promise for his previous yard and was a keeping-on second on his debut for this one in a 2m1f handicap at Newcastle (good to soft); that was a good run after so long out and, if seeing out this longer trip, he should be thereabouts.

9/2

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Verdict

A competitive gallop can be expected and that should prove ideal for handicap newcomer YES DAY, who kept on for fifth in a Grade 2 novice at Cheltenham last month after getting outpaced. The unexposed 6yo Imaginary Dragon could be a big danger on the back of his impressive win over 2m6f at Kelso, while Punta Del Este was a revelation here last time and is next on the list. Inox Allen and Blueway Classic are interesting contenders on handicap debut, with Johnson’s Blue and Classic Concorde others who could run well.[Ben Hutton]