The strongest action in terms of quality is comprised of four and three-runner races on Saturday, which isn't ideal, but it is great to see Altior stepping up in trip and Cyrname not dodging the challenge.
At Haydock Park, it is Bristol De Mai’s Gold Cup - AKA the Betfair Chase.
Even though he is only eight, I believe his chance of Cheltenham glory have gone but if anything can beat him in a race that clearly suits him so well then they might be a real contender so my eyes, in that respect, will firmly be on Lostintranslation.
Connections have opted for this race instead of the marathon event that ends the card, but even though this is worth twice as much it could well be the right move.
I put him up at Cheltenham last time on his reappearance and was encouraged to see notable support appear for him on the morning of the race. He went well for a long way, but then tired and didn’t get home.
If he comes on for that run, I still believe that he is a well-handicapped young staying chaser who is most capable of continuing the fine form of his trainer. He ran a very good race over these fences last season so a return should suit.
I think he is one to be with this season and could make amends for his fall at Cheltenham last time - he may well have given Benny’s Bridge something to think about in that event as he was travelling well and had not been asked for anything when coming down.
The fact that Philip Kirby sent the horse to Cheltenham suggests he holds him in high regard. He won three hurdles last season (two for Kirby, one for Gordon Elliott) including a pair of successes on soft ground and looks to have a decent future in handicaps despite going up 2lb since that fall.
David Pipe does exceptionally well at Haydock and I believe it is because his horses generally stay very well and can get through soft ground. Know The Score could be something special over extended trips and can beat some more experienced stayers here.
He showed great battling qualities to win at Worcester last time out (over fences similar to those he will face at Haydock) and has only gone up 5lb for that effort, while at the same time looking very much as though he will be suited by further. Pipe expressed Cheltenham hopes for him in a stable tour on Friday so clearly thinks he is potentially better than a 129-rated chaser. I agree.
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