Aintree Rain Could Benefit Kalashnikov5 min read
There is heavy rain forecast for all tracks across Britain on Friday and Saturday and there is a “precautionary” inspection at Doncaster at 7.30 this morning although no inspection is planned for Newbury and Aintree on Sunday should be unaffected.
I hope to see Kinross (2.55) maintain his unbeaten record in the Gp 3 Cancom Stakes – formerly known as the Horris Hill. Ralph Beckett’s colt made a visually impressive debut at Newmarket on debut winning by 8L on good to soft ground. His ability to handle today’s heavy ground must be taken on trust but the runner up has subsequently landed the odds at Kempton. He is 6/5 at BetVictor for this afternoon’s race and 16/1 for next year’s 2000 Guineas.
Morando and Young Rascal (2.20) dead-heated in last year’s St Simon Stakes 12 months ago and the pair meet again on the same terms today. Morando has the best recent form going into the race but the William Haggas-trained four-year-old has been gelded since his last start and should be fresh returning from a five-month lay-off. He gets the nod at 11/4 with BetVictor.
Cheltenham (14.00): Captain Chaos
In the opening 3m 1f handicap Chase at Cheltenham Dan Skelton saddles three and I feel Captain Chaos (2.00) can reward each way support at 16/1 with BetVictor who are betting each way five places. Bridget Andrews take the mount on this 8-year-old who has had a run at Wetherby and ran a very good race in the Kim Muir at the Festival back in the spring.
Cheltenham (14.35): Torpillo
Quel Distin may struggle to given 4lbs to Torpillo (2.35) in the 2m Conditions Hurdle for 4-year-olds. The selection won well on his reappearance at Chepstow and connections have shelved plans to go chasing to take in this valuable event. He is likely to stay over hurdles if he runs well this afternoon. The selection is 11/4 with BetVictor.
One note of caution – he did run poorly at Cheltenham in the Fred Winter back in Match when he was too free to do himself justice. He settled much better on his reappearance and the hope is that his Festival run was just a blip.
Cheltenham (16.55): Slate House
Secret Investor was taken out of his planned reappearance at Chepstow on account of the soft ground earlier in the month and he is a likely favourite who looks vulnerable on the ground in the Novice Chase. Slate House (4.55) remains a maiden after failing to win in four starts over fences last season, but he has had another wind operation since his last run, has good course form over timber and goes well fresh.
Chelmsford (19.30): Midport
At Chelmsford this evening Midport (7.30) returns to the track for the inform Roger Charlton for the first time since looking a potential improver over tonight’s 1m 6f trip when beaten 6l staying on over 1m 4f on his handicap debut at Salisbury. Thomas Greatrex takes off a valuable 5lbs and the 3-year-old has a good draw in stall five.
*NAP* Aintree (15.00): Kalashnikov
The ground was given as good at Aintree for Sunday’s terrific card, but significant rain is forecast on Saturday and I am sweet on the chances of Kalashnikov (3.00) in the Old Roan Chase. The selection is 7/4 with BetVictor and gets a stone from last year’s winner Frodon. Indeed, I feel Forest Bihan might be a bigger danger for inform Brian Ellison stepping up in trip to two-and-a-half miles for the first time.
Aintree (13.50): Burtons Well
The Veteran’s Chase is another excellent race and I hope Venetia Williams has Burtons Well (1.50) back to something like his best returning from 1 664-day lay-off. Soft ground suits this 10-year-old who has an excellent record fresh and it is well documented how much owner Trevor Hemmings likes to have winners at his local track.