Most of today’s best action takes place at Sandown, where the valuable Veterans’ Chase Final is the feature contest at 3.00pm.
Channel 4 are showing live coverage of the races at 1.50, 2.25, 3.00 and 3.35.
Veterans’ Handicap Chase Final
Conditions at the Esher circuit are better on the chase course than the hurdles track, but stamina will still be key in this race, which is open to horses aged 10 or older.
Unsurprisingly, given the make-up of her stable, Venetia Williams has a number of good chances and, at a big price, RENARD could be worth chancing.
He is on a long losing run, but is well handicapped as a result and ran okay on his comeback behind a few of these at Carlisle recently. He looks to have been aimed at this race and he handles give in the ground. He should be able to exploit his current mark at some point this season and, hopefully, today will be the day.
Other outsiders to consider are CREEVYTENNANT and French Opera. They clashed at Leicester recently behind Houston Dynimo and with doubts over the latter’s stamina the former should be backed with his yard back in form and the tongue tie back on.
Of the more fancied runners we like BENBENS and Reaping The Reward.
Narrow preference is for Benbens, who ran well for a long way in the Hennessy recently and should appreciate the drop in class.
Reaping The Reward will be a threat as, despite his age, he is relatively lightly raced and arguably open to more improvement than any of these. Richard Johnson is also an eye-catching booking.
Not only are Paddy Power offering 4 places for each-way bets on this race (just 3 places elsewhere), but they are also refunding losing bets, as a free bet of up to £25 per customer per race, if your horse finishes 2nd to the SP favourite at Sandown.
|Renard (ew)||3.00 Sandown||14/1||Paddy Power|
|Benbens (ew)||3.00 Sandown||10/1||Paddy Power|
|Creevytennant (ew)||3.00 Sandown||22/1||Paddy Power|
Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle
The day’s Grade 1 contest is the Tolworth Hurdle and we have seen in recent days that upsets are possible even when you have small fields and short price favourites. This contest could be another case in point as you can pick holes in all three of the fancied runners.
Yorkhill may want further, whilst O O Seven and Welsh Shadow may want better ground. A chance is worth taking, therefore, on the two outsiders – AGRAPART and CYRIUS MORIVIERE.
Both come from in-form stables and, crucially, should handle the conditions. It will be disappointing if one of them doesn’t at least make the frame.
|Agrapart (ew)||2.25 Sandown||10/1||Bet365, Paddy Power, Coral|
|Cyrius Moriviere (ew)||2.25 Sandown||50/1||Bet365, Coral|
32Red Casino Juvenile Hurdle
The card opens with a juvenile hurdle and, with slight doubts about the form of the Jonjo O’Neill yard, Master of Speed looks the value.
|Master Of Speed (win)||12.05 Sandown||6/4||Bet365, Paddy Power, Coral|
The Mares’ Hurdle that follows is a listed contest and, at the weights, POLLY PEACHUM is the one to beat. She loves the track and should see off the two Willie Mullins’ raiders.
The fly in the ointment could be THE GOVERNESS, who will be having only her second start for the excellent Richard Newland yard.
|Polly Peachum (win)||12.40 Sandown||9/2||Bet365|
|The Governess (ew)||12.40 Sandown||7/1||Bet365|
32Red Casino Handicap Chase
Venetia Williams could dominate the two handicap chases at 1.15 and 1.50 courtesy of Vic De Touzaine and Arthurs Oak but, at the prices, the best bet in those two contests could be JUST CAMERON.
Mickey Hammond’s charge was one of the North’s best novices last season and he could be well handicapped now taking on more experienced rivals.
|Just Cameron (ew)||1.50 Sandown||7/1||Bet365, Betfred|
32Red Handicap Hurdle
Finally, on ground he loves, MELODIC RENDEZVOUS looks the one to beat in the closing handicap hurdle despite his big weight. The stable form is a worry, but this is a big drop in class for this former graded hurdle winner.
KAYF BLANCO looks his biggest rival following another decent effort at Cheltenham last time out. He stays this trip well and so should relish the stiff finish here.
|Melodic Rendezvous (ew)||3.35 Sandown||11/2||Bet365, Paddy Power|
|Kayf Blanco (ew)||3.35 Sandown||8/1||Bet365, Betfred|