Rachel Candelora's top tips for Wednesday: Art can take advantage of drop in class

By Rachel Candelora
Wed 9 Jan 2019

Having had a wonderful weekend down in the south of France watching top class jump racing under cloudless, sunny skies, with temperatures reaching 17 degrees, I think I am a little more chilled than usual and perhaps a little more forgiving.

All four of my selections this week are horses I have strongly supported in the past, only for them to lose! I’m confident it is payback time on Wednesday. Best of luck.

2:10 Doncaster: Before Midnight

We all know that you can virtually follow Nicky Henderson blind at Kempton, so after the Champion Trainer had saddled the previous two winners on the November 12 card at the Sunbury track, 15-8 looked a fair price about Before Midnight in the 2m5f Novices' Hurdle.

However, after his rider that day, James Bowen, had his whip knocked out of his hands after the final flight, he was beaten two lengths by Tidal Flow.

That form now appears to be decent given the winner has gone in again since at Newbury and, although Henderson’s record might not be quite as good at Doncaster compared to Kempton, it is not far off it.

2:45 Doncaster: Magellan

I strongly fancied Magellan when he lined up for the London Middle Distance Series Final at Kempton on the all-weather in November but, having broken from the stalls a tad slowly under replacement rider Shane Kelly from his wide draw, he was never going to feature and it is best to forgive him that run.

That was his first start for Philip Kirby and his new trainer is wasting no time in getting this big, strong son of Sea The Stars started on a hurdling career.

As a three-times flat winner, his best form was on flat tracks and, although a maiden on turf, his best runs came on top of the ground, and he may have the speed here to beat a field made up of mostly bumper winners.

4:15 Kempton: Admirable Art

A grand-old servant who has won ten of his 61 career starts - including four over seven furlongs - and he is the one they have to beat in the opener at Kempton on Wednesday.

Admirable Art produced a good effort to finish third at Wolverhampton when trying to make all the running from stall one which, from the seven-furlong chute, is a hard ask.

The form of that race has been franked as the second scored next time out at Wolverhampton.

This son of Excellent Art is dropping to the lowest grade he has run at in Britain - he has run once at this level in Jersey and won - and Adam Kirby keeps the mount, which is notable as half of this gelding’s wins have been with Kirby aboard.

6:15 Kempton: Cenotaph

Another horse I was very keen on when ran here at Kempton last time out and was beaten a neck by Mazzini.

This son of War Front has been given a three-month break since then and has shown in the past that he runs best fresh.

His regular jockey Ryan Moore is back riding in the UK for the first time in 2019 at Kempton on Wednesday with two rides and this is obviously the reason he is here.

Unlike in his last run, there is a lot of pace in the race, especially with Corinthia Knight breaking from stall three, and Cenotaph will have a good target to follow.

Remember, this is the horse that trainer Jeremy Noseda believes is good enough for the Golden Shaheen at Meydan and, if that is true, he should take all of the beating here.

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