IT’S Unibet Lanzarote Hurdle day at Kempton on Saturday.
The valuable 2m5f contest is always a cracking betting heat, while the card also features the Grade 2 Silviniaco Conti Chase.
Race 1 – 12.20 Read Nicky Henderson’s Unibet Blog Juvenile Hurdle
LORD LAMINGTON has been rerouted here after Huntingdon was abandoned yesterday.
He was a ready winner on his hurdles debut and was far from disgraced when second in a Grade 2 at Doncaster latest.
He can make the most of this drop in class and is preferred to Fraser Island, who made light work of the opposition when winning on his hurdling bow in a weak race at Newbury.
That pair should fight out the finish, but Goa Lil isn’t discounted at a bigger price.
SELECTION: Lord Lamington
DANGER: Fraser Island
Race 2 – 12.55 32Red.com Novices’ Hurdle
A bitterly disappointing turnout.
This looks a penalty kick for smart French recruit SAINT XAVIER.
He had some high-class form across the Channel and shaped as though he was badly in need of the run on his British debut at Cheltenham.
He can prove too strong for Delight Of Dubai and Bourbon Borderline.
SELECTION: Saint Xavier
DANGER: Delight Of Dubai
Race 3 – 1.30 Unibet Download The App Handicap Chase
SAMMY BILL has improved markedly since switching to fences.
The seven-year-old has looked a natural over the bigger obstacles and can take an 11lb rise in the weights in his stride.
Mercian Prince took a step back in the right direction at Catterick last time and is feared most in the first-time visor.
Sao and Cap St Vincent are also worth a place on the shortlist.
SATURDAY NAP: Sammy Bill
DANGER: Mercian Prince
Race 4 – 2.05 Unibet Silviniaco Conti Chase (Grade 2)
The admirable Top Notch took out another big race last month, winning the Peterborough Chase at Huntingdon.
He is now 2lb worse off with Kauto Riko, who was staying on well in second place there, but he was probably worth more than the three-quarters of a length winning margin as he idled after the last.
But both will struggle to contain FRODON if he can rediscover something like his best form.
The Paul Nicholls-trained eight-year-old capped a brilliant campaign with victory in the Ryanair Chase last March.
He has been below-par in two outings so far this term, but recent reports of his work at home have been encouraging and he won cosily on his only previous start over C&D.
DANGER: Top Notch
Race 5 – 2.40 Unibet Lanzarote Handicap Hurdle (Listed)
NOTRE PARI has a very appealing profile for a race like this.
He has made good progress with each visit to the track this year and opened his hurdling account in fine style at Aintree.
He’s a strong traveller who should get a good gallop to aim at, and if he continues on his upward curve a mark of 130 should prove well within reach.
Larkbarrow Lad has had a wind op since winning at Worcester and drying ground conditions will be right up his street.
Northofthewall should cope with this step up in trip and is also considered, while Burrows Edge won’t be far away is none the worse for his Ludlow spill.
SELECTION: Notre Pari
DANGER: Larkbarrow Lad
Race 6 – 3.15 Try Unibet New Uniboosts Handicap Chase
On The Blind Side is the class act in the field, but his career hasn’t taken off as expected over fences and he looks a shade vulnerable for win purposes.
Take a flyer on WAR SOUND, who shaped better than the bare result when fifth on desperate ground at Ascot last time out.
This sounder surface will suit and he has slipped to a very dangerous mark.
Walt and Touch Kick hold solid each-way claims.
SELECTION: War Sound
DANGER: On The Blind Side
Race 7 – 3.45 Download 32Red Casino App Handicap Hurdle
Never Adapt caught the eye when staying on strongly for third over 2m1f at Cheltenham on her reappearance last month.
But there is a big worry that this sharper track won’t provide a stiff enough test, so she is taken on with GOLDEN TAIPAN.
Fergal O’Brien’s six-year-old showed a terrific attitude when winning over C&D on his most recent outing and a 3lb rise could prove lenient.
At bigger odds, course winner Fransham could go close with the ground starting to come right.