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Trainer Anthony Honeyball aims to defend 100 per cent Wetherby record
Up-and-coming trainer Anthony Honeyball, who has had two winners from two runners at Wetherby, bids to keep a 100 per cent record today as the course opens with its annual Spinal Research charity day.
Honeyball, who is based in Dorset, saddles the aptly-named Dorset Naga in the featured Bobby Renton Chase and this progressive seven-year-old promises to be hard to beat.
Winner of two of his three races over fences, both at Fontwell, Dorset Naga had five lengths to spare on his latest start earlier this month.
He could hardly be in better form coming into this £10,000 event and Honeyball looks to have a fine chance of extending his unbeaten Wetherby record with this afternoon’s nap selection.
Tony McCoy is the star riding attraction at the opening meeting and the popular champion, who is on the trail of becoming the first jump jockey to ride 4,000 winners, has double prospects on Temple Lord and Strongly Suggested.
Temple Lord, who goes in the Claim Your Free Bets At welovefreebets.com Handicap Chase, is nothing if not consistent.
He has run well at Fontwell and Stratford since winning at Worcester and will certainly not fail for lack of fitness.
Strongly Suggested is another model of consistency. He has been in rude health for a while now, sandwiching a good placed effort with wins at Market Rasen and Stratford. He is entitled to go well again in the Read racinguk.com/Columnists Handicap Hurdle.
Charlie Longsdon is a trainer to follow at present after completing a five-timer at Carlisle last Friday.
He saddles Long Wave in the Wetherby Racecourse And Conference Centre Novices’ Handicap Chase.
A winner at Uttoxeter in July, Long Wave has since finished third on the same course last month. That outing should have teed him up nicely for this staying event.
Brian Ellison’s Mixed Message (2.20), a dual-winner on the Flat, is worthy of a second look in the juvenile hurdle, while Devotion To Duty (5.30), a winner at Newcastle last season for Lucinda Russell, looks an interesting runner for his new trainer, Phil Kirby.
At Nottingham, Richard Fahey, who sent out four winners on Monday – doubles at Windsor and Musselburgh – can maintain the excellent form he has displayed throughout the season.
The Malton trainer sends out Las Verglas Star in the Fortinet Gold Partner Handicap and George Chaloner’s mount has a fighting chance on the evidence of his creditable fourth-placed effort at Pontefract last month.
Fahey’s three-year-old Mary’s Daughter is not without a chance in the Fortinet Silver Partner Handicap (division two), but preference is for Towbee, who ran well at Hamilton a couple of weeks ago, when he was just caught in the dying strides. He will relish the forecast soft ground.
2.20 Mixed Message, 2.50 Temple Lord, 3.25 Strongly Suggested, 3.55 Dorset Naga (NAP), 4.30 Three Kingdoms, 5.00 Long Wave, 5.30 Devotion To Duty.
2.10 Dragoon Guard, 2.40 Gold Class, 3.15 Chesil Beach, 3.45 Proximate, 4.20 Las Verglas Star, 4.50 Perfect Blossom, 5.20 Towbee, 5.50 Beauty Pageant.
Today’s other meetings: Kempton and Lingfield.
Tomorrow’s meetings: Brighton, Kempton, Uttoxeter and Wincanton.
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