Saturday TV Horse Racing Trends & Tips: 4th Nov 2017

Ascot and Wetherby horse racing tips

It’s jump action all the way this Saturday as the hedge-hoppers take over from the flat horses with the new National Hunt season starting to hit top gear now.

Wetherby and Ascot are where the ITV cameras are at as we’ve seven races spread across the two venues with the Grade Two Charlie Hall Chase the feature contest at Wetherby and with some familiar faces lining-up then it’s a must-see early season contest,  while at Ascot the Sodexo Gold Cup heads their bill.

So, as always, we’ve got it all covered here at JUICESTORM with all the key trends, plus our verdict, on each of the LIVE ITV races – we’re confident these trends will point you in the direction of a few winners, or at least help narrow down some of the field to highlight the horses that fit the best profile of past winners – So, let’s get going!


Ascot Horse Racing Trends (ITV/ATR)

1.50 – Ascot Underwriting Novices´ Limited Handicap Chase Cl3 2m3f ITV

4 previous runnings
4/4 – Irish bred
3/4 – Aged 6 year-old
2/4 – Yet to win over fences
2/4 – Had run over hurdles at Ascot before
0/4 – Winning favourites
Trainer Paul Nicholls has a 25% record with his chasers at the track
Trainer Nicky Henderson has a 22% record with his chasers at the track
The average winning SP in the last 4 runnings is 13/2

JUICESTORM VERDICT: Only four previous running of this race so not a great deal to go on so it might be just worth sticking with the two powerful yards of Paul Nicholls and Nicky Henderson – who both boast a decent 25% and 22% strike-rates. Nicholls actually runs two – Bagdad Bihoue and Copain De Classe – and with Sam Twiston-Davies getting the leg-up on the last-named then this one makes more appeal. COPAIN DE CLASSE was last seen winning a novice hurdle at Wincanton and looks a typical French-bred chaser that can make a splash over the bigger obstacles. The quicker ground is fine as he’s won on good-to-soft in the past, while with another summer on his back the extra yardage looks fine too. Nicholls’ other runner heads here having unseated last time out at Fakenham, but with 4 wins over fences from just 7 outings does have plenty of experience and despite falling last time out actually jumped well that day and looked to have the race won before coming to grief. This is harder, but certainly a player too. Henderson runs Ballinure, who has won 2 of his 3 starts over fences, and should be a lot fitter for a recent spin over hurdles. He had a busy summer over the sticks – winning twice – and also stays further than this trip. Space Oddity, Benatar and Duke Street are others to note, but with Nicholls having that 25% record over fences here we’ll stick with one of his two – Copain De Classe.


2.25 – Byrne Group Handicap Chase (Listed Race) Cl1 2m1f ITV

12/14 – Aged 8 years-old or younger
10/14 – Irish (4) or French (6) bred
9/14 – Returned 6/1 or shorter in the betting
9/14 – Had won between 1-3 times over fences before
9/14 – Having their first run of the new season
8/14 – Carried 11-1 or less in weight
7/14 – Rated 130 or lower
7/14 – Unplaced favourites
5/14 – Aged 8 years-old
4/14 – Won last time out
4/14 – Ran at either Ascot (2) or Aintree (2) last time out
3/14 – Won carrying 11-12
3/14 – Winning favourites
3/14 – Trained by Paul Nicholls
3/14 – Trained by Venetia Williams
2/14 – Ridden by Richard Johnson
Quite By Chance won the race in 2016
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 9/1

JUICESTORM VERDICT: Despite ending the season below-par last year’s winner of this race – QUITE BY CHANCE (e/w) – can’t be ruled out for the Colin Tizzard yard. However, he’s 9lbs higher this time so more is required and didn’t have the best backend to the season. On a plus, he’s the only course and distance winner in the field and that must count for something, while his last two runs here at Ascot read an impressive 1-2. Paul Nicholls has a good record in the race so his Marracudja is another to note, but this horse is not the easiest to catch right and does have a spat of seconditis to his name. Another stable that have done well in this is the Venetia Williams team so their CALIPTO (e/w) can’t be ruled out either. Bryan Cooper catches the eye in the saddle and heads here being lightly-races last season. Still only 7 years-old he’s got time on his hands, plus has gone well fresh in the past so the 197 day break isn’t too much of a concern – 12 of the last 14 winners were aged 8 or younger. Sticking with that age trend then the 9 year-olds in the race – Little Pop, Exitas, Festive Affair and Somchine – are overlooked. Henderson’s Theinval is another to note and rarely runs a bad race, but with 11-12 he has to give a lot of weight away and after a 189 day break that might be tough. Max Ward improved last season too and should have an exciting season ahead, while the Gary Moore-trained Chris Pea Green would be interesting if returning after a 598 day break near the form he showed a few years ago. Finally, we can expect Speredek to take them along at a fair pace and those tactics saw him win his last three. He’s up 6lbs more here, but is clearly a horse on the up, but will need to prove it in this higher grade.

3.00 – William Hill Handicap Hurdle (Listed Race) Cl1 2m ITV

13/13 – Aged between 4 and 6 years-old
13/13 – Had won over at 2m or 2m1f over hurdles before
11/13 – Never raced at Ascot before
10/13 – Won between 1-3 times over hurdles
9/13 – Having their first run of the season
8/13 – Unplaced last time out
7/13 – Placed favourites
6/13 – Ran at Huntingdon (3) or Aintree (3) last time out
6/13 – Winning favourites (1 co, 1 joint)
5/13 – Winning distance – 2 lengths or more
4/13 – Won by a French bred horse
3/13 – Ridden by a conditional jockey
2/13 – Won by the Pipe stable
2/13 – Won by trainer Paul Nicholls
2/13 – Won by the Nicky Henderson team
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 7/1

JUICESTORM VERDICT: With ALL of the last 13 winners aged between 4 and 6 years-old then this is a good trend to take into the race. However, of the 15 runners it only actually rules two out – Song Light and Clayton. It’s been another good race for the Henderson and Nicholls yards with 4 wins between them in the last 13 runnings – Nicholls runs Dolos, who has finished in the first two in all his last four starts, while Henderson saddles a strong-hand too with Verdana Blue and JENKINS. Both are respected, but the 5 year-old Jenkins just edges it for me. Yes, he flopped at Kempton on Boxing Day last season, with another of today’s runners – Elgin – making the most of that below-par effort, but he soon put that right with a smooth win at Ffos Las back in April and with another 6 months to strengthen-up he could be in for a big season. A mark of 137 on his handicap debut looks fair and he’s a horse that if often best caught fresh. Peruvien Bleu,, Air Horse One and Midnight Maestro are others that cases can be made for in this competitive contest, but it’s also interesting that jockey Sam Twiston-Davies rides the Dr Newland-trained CAID DU LIN (e/w). This 5 year-old won well at Fontwell last month and despite this being a harder race a 6lb hike in the ratings looks fair and having been placed in the top three in 11 of his hurdles races so can be expected to be in the shake-up in some form or another.

3.35 – Sodexo Gold Cup Handicap Chase (Grade 3) Cl1 3m ITV

12/12 – Had won a chase race over at least 2 ½m before
10/12 – Didn’t win last time out
9/12 – Had run at Ascot before (4 won)
8/12 – Had won at least 3 times over fences before
8/12 – Unplaced favourites
8/12 – Had won a chase race over at least 3m before
8/12 – Having their first run of the season
8/12 – Unplaced in their last race
7/12 – Carried 10-10 or more
7/12 – Aged 8 or older
7/12 – Winning distance – 4 lengths or more
6/12 – Officially rated 135 to 138 inc
5/12 – Returned a double-figure price in the betting
3/12 – Won by the Pipe stable
3/12 – Winning favourites
2/12 – Ran at Sandown last time out
Antony won the race in 2016
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 11/1

JUICESTORM VERDICT: A super tough renewal with 20 runners heading to post, but last year’s winner – ANTONY (e/w) – looks to have decent claims again. This 7 year-old returned to the track with a fair third (of 8) at Fontwell last month and should now be spot-on for this. Yes, he’s 4lbs higher than 12 months ago too, but he’s had a very similar preparation (ran in that same Fontwell race) so everything looks in place for a big run. We know the track suits and with 4 ½ lengths to spare over the second that day – Junction Fourteen – then the 4lb rise looks fair. Carole’s Destrier, Regal Encore, The Young Master & Bigbadjohn are other proven course and distance winners here so command respect based on that, while Thomas Brown and Dark Flame are also course winners, albeit not over this trip. The selection was beaten by another of today’s runners – Go Conquer – last time at Fontwell, but gets a 9lb pull for that defeat, while we can fully expect Antony to have come on for that first run back too. The second – As De Mee – has also franked the form by winning recently which is another good sign the form is solid. Of the rest, the Paul Nicholls-trained Braqueur D’Or caught the eye when winning well at Ludlow last time and is clearly though up to this higher grade. A 10lb hike in the ratings will mean more is needed, but this French-bred is yet to finish out of the top three (6 runs) over fences so there could be more to come. The Nicholls camp are also going well at the moment (32% at the time of writing), plus they also run Art Mauresque. Of the rest, the Twiston-Davies pair of Ballykan and Ballycross will be better for recent runs, while Emerging Market is better than the running of his last two starts and if freshened up after a break is another that could have a good season.

Wetherby Horse Racing Trends (ITV/RUK)

2.05 – Mares´ Hurdle (Listed Race) Cl1 2m110y ITV

10/10 – Had won over at least 2m1f over hurdles before
9/10 – Never raced at Wetherby before
9/10 – Had between 2-5 previous hurdles wins to their name
8/10 – Having their first run of the season
7/10 – Finished unplaced last time out
6/10 – Placed favourites
5/10 – Aged between 5-7 years-old
5/10 – Had won a NH Flat race previously
4/10 – Ran at Punchestown last time out
4/10 – Winning favourites
2/10 – Trained by John Quinn
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 4/1

JUICESTORM VERDICT: Lady Buttons did well last season and is weighted to go well here, while the Tom George-trained Miss Night Owl will be fitter than most after a nice win at Stratford last month. However, this will be harder for them both now upped into Listed grade and really on these terms the 138-rated LA BAGUE AU ROI is the one to beat. This Warren Greatrex-trained 6 year-old has to give 2lbs to the others, but is the clear highest-rated in the field and is also the only proven course and distance winner in the race. She was a fair 7th in the Mares’ Novice at the Cheltenham Festival, plus ran Finian’s Oscar to 10 lengths at Aintree back in April. At just 6 years-old we can expect more improvement and those bits of form set the clear standard in a race like this. The consistent Giveaway Glance and Graceful Legend are others to note.

2.40 –  bet365 Hurdle (West Yorkshire Hurdle) (Grade 2) Cl1 3m26y ITV

15/15 – Had won over at least 2m3f over hurdles before
14/15 – Had won at least 3 times over hurdles before
14/15 – Returned 8/1 or shorter in the betting
13/15 – Won this on their seasonal reappearance
12/15 – Failed to win their last race
12/15 – Officially rated 149 or higher
11/15 – Placed favourites
10/15 – Aged 6,7 or 8 years-old
8/15 – Ran at either Aintree (5) or Cheltenham (3) last time out
8/15 – Finished unplaced last time out
6/15 – Had won at Wetherby before
4/15 – Winning favourites
3/15 – Trained by Philip Hobbs
3/15 – Trained by Paul Nicholls
Silsol won the race 12 months ago
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 7/2

JUICESTORM VERDICT: Some decent sorts line-up here and despite only 7 runners it’s still a top contest. The Paul Nicholls yard boast a good record – winning it 3 times in the last 5 years – so their PTIT ZIG gets the nod here. Yes, this 8 year-old has a bit to find with the 164-rated Lil Rockerfeller, who is a big player too, but we can expect him to be wound up for this in a race the yard love to do well in. Yes, he’s also got a bit to prove of late after a few below-par runs, but a break would have done him good and he’s a horse that has gone well fresh in the past too. Conditions look fine so he’s worth chancing. Lil Rockerfeller is the one to beat on the ratings and sets a very good standard after running a close second in the World Hurdle last season, but he’s a bit of a horse that rarely runs a bad race, but doesn’t win much. With that in-mind, there looks to be little value in taking the short odds. Of the rest, Wholestone will have it’s supporters too after a good novice campaign last season. He’ll strip a lot fitter for a recent 4th (of 18) at Chepstow in a competitive handicap, but does have 12lbs to find with Ptit Zig and 18lbs to find with Lil Rockerfeller.

3.15 – bet365 Charlie Hall Chase (Grade 2) Cl1 3m1f ITV

13/15 – Were having their first run of the season
12/15 – Returned 7/1 or shorter in the betting
12/15 – Had won over at least 3m over fences before
13/15 – Rated 151 or higher
11/15 – Aged 8 or older
10/15 – Placed favourites
10/15 – Had won at least 4 times over fences before
9/15 – Ran at either Ayr (3), Aintree (4) or Cheltenham (2) last time out
9/15 – Aged 8 or 9 years-old
6/15 – Had run at Wetherby before (2 won)
6/15  – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
4/15 – Winning favourites
2/15 – Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies
2/15 – Trained by Evan Williams
Nigel Twiston-Davies has won the race in 1992, 1994, 2005 & 2007
The average winning SP in the last 15 runnings is 15/2

JUICESTORM VERDICT: The Nigel Twiston-Davies camp, who have started the season in great form, have a cracking record in this race – winning it four times since 1994 – and they will be trying to improve that record with the 159-rated Bristol De Mai. It’s hard to believe this horse is still only 6 years-old but after a decent third in the Denman Chase and then 7th in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham last season he’s already cemented himself as a fair yardstick in these top staying races now. Yes, he disappointed last time at Aintree back in April, but he’d had a very busy season for a young horse and with another year on his back should have another big season. However, 11 of the last 15 winners were aged 8 or older, plus for the last two season’s he’s failed to win first time out (2nd both times). Twiston-Davies could also run Blaklion, who is a proven course and distance winner here and is closely-matched with Bristol De Mai. He was last seen running fourth in the Aintree Grand National, but it remains to be seen if that race – even though it was 7 months ago – has left it’s mark. More Of That would be a big player on old form, but has rather lost his way in recent seasons so a lot has to be taken on trust. One of the big stories ahead of the race is the return of former Gold Cup winner – Coneygree – and he’s another that would take all the beating if coming back at the same level. He’s still rated 165 and actually gets weight from a lot of the others so considering he won the Gold Cup in 2015 off 166 and also off 172 would make him very well handicapped. The reports coming out of the Bradstock camp are that he’s done well over the summer but until we see him on the track I’d rather be a watcher than a backer to see if he is returning as the same horse after his various injury setbacks. The other big name in the race is the 2015 winner – Cue Card. However, he was beaten into third in this race last season and has now not won first time out for the last four seasons! Add in that he’s now 11 years-old (going on 12) and despite still showing a decent level of form last season time has to start catching up with him sooner rather than later. So, of the main players that really only leaves us with DEFINITLY RED (e/w). Brian Ellison’s 8 year-old ticks a lot of the main trends and being he’s another proven course and distance winner in the field that gives him a further plus. We saw him last being pulled-up in the Grand National at Aintree back in April. He was badly hampered that day and the saddle eventually slipped so that run certainly had it’s excuses. He’s been put away since, but before that National run he was an easy winner of the Grimthorpe Chase at Doncaster – a run that would see him go very close here. He’s also got a decent record fresh after winning on his seasonal reappearance in three of the last 4 years. At 8 years-old old there should be more to come too, while his chase record in general is very good with 10 runs, 4 wins and 3 place finishes.




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