Dave Nevison: My top tips for Carlisle and Ludlow

By Dave Nevison@nevisondave
Thu 21 Oct 2021

Our pundit Dave Nevison struck with a 10/3 winner on Tuesday and has three fancies for Thursday’s action. Enjoy 20 live races from Carlisle, Ludlow and Thurles live on Racing TV and Racing TV Extra.

There are two UK jumps meetings for me to look at on the channel on Thursday and that will be a change of focus. I haven’t tried to do anything too left field here, but hopefully there are solid cases for these to run well.

3.05 Carlisle: Ashoka

He’s 7lb lower than the last time he ran in a handicap hurdle and only 4lb higher than his last victory in one, so Ashoka is clearly well-handicapped.

While that was three seasons ago, he has improved as a chaser and rated in the mid 130s over fences. It would be highly unusual for Dan Skelton not to try and exploit an obvious edge and if anyone can get him ready to win after an absence Skelton can.

Ashoka has won on faster ground in the past and this extended trip on a stiff track such as Carlisle should suit him well.

3.40 Carlisle: Present Chief

He would have gone into plenty of notebooks after his recent comeback at Worcester - and to be dropped 1lb for that run would seem a gift.

Present Chief looks perfectly capable of winning from this mark given normal progress from his chase debut and, given the form of his yard, I expect him to go very close at least.

Jonjo O’Neill seems to like Carlisle, especially for a promising young chaser and this one fits the bill. Present Chief has already shown he gets a staying trip and Jonjo O’Neill junior - who won on him twice last season - takes over in the saddle here.

3.50 Ludlow: Tip Top Cat

While he’s trying different ground on stable debut for Fergal O’Brien, he’s worth chancing in a race that only looks to have a couple that can be considered.

Tip Top Cat was fairly highly-tried over hurdles for his previous yard and had an abortive run over fences in January but will be much happier in these calmer waters - especially with a good conditional reducing his weight even further.

Tip Top Cat has looked a stayer (and is bred to be so) and I don’t anticipate stamina to be any issue. His new stable have been going great guns this summer and into the autumn.

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