Friday, 4 April 2014

2pts win BALLYNAGOUR 7/1 (Generally available) Betfred Melling Chase
1pt win PEPITE ROSE 14/1 (Generally available) Betfred Melling Chase

This is one of the worst renewals of this event in memory and as a result it may pay to not consider the trends angles at all and look at the race from scratch.

Ballynagour looks one hell of a good horse when his ailments don't curb him and is no doubt better that the bare ratings suggest. There is still a bit of the unknown about him but he is a massive danger to all here and given the make up of this years event he appeals as a bet here.

You'd never have though Pepite Rose would be in the Melling with a realistic chance but that is very much the case here. A real Spring mare, she looked better than ever last time and should give a really good account of herself.

Lost - 3pts

2pts win MA FILLEULE 15/1 (Betfair and Betdaq)  Crabbies Topham Chase
1pt win REBEL REBELLION 23/1 (Betfair) Crabbies Topham Chase

Nine of the last ten winners of this have carried 10 st 11 lb or under but that trend could be bucked here as plenty near the top of the handicap have strong claims today.

Ma Filleule ran an absolute cracker when finishing runner up to Holywell at Cheltenham in a typical red hot handicap. She races close to the pace and there is every reason to suggest that she'll be involved in a big way here.

Rebel Rebellion won the Grand Sefton over these fences earlier in the season. That was in testing conditions as was his excellent run at Newbury last time but he is fully effective on a better surface and is a must for the short list.

Ma Filleule won + 27.5pts

2pts win STONEBROOK 6/1 (Generally available) Alder Hey H'cap Hdle
1pt win ALAIVAN 15/1 (Betfair and Betdaq) Alder Hey H'cap Hdle

The owner of these two has a terrific record in this event and there are reasons to believe that both will be involved here.

Stonebrook runs in a handicap for the first time and a degree of guesswork is required here but he looks to have been targeted at this for a few months now and could be anything - though no doubt he'll be going over fences next season.

Alaivan hasen't won for three years but  has run two crackers on his last two starts, both in better races than this. He was beaten less than six lengths when sixth in the Betfair followed by a staying on ninth to Lac Fontana in the County. This trip on this sort of track my just be what he wants nowadays -  the only over time he was tried at this trip wa s when pulled up in a G2 at Auteuil in 2010.

Lost - 3pts