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Saturday Horse Racing Tips

There’s a cracking card for punters to get stuck into at Ayr today as the sunshine and better ground have led to large, competitive fields in most races.

Scotty Brand Handicap Chase     

There could be some surprises too as the conditions will be very different to those encountered by most of the runners through the unusually wet season so far, and the good ground will certainly suit apparently out of form horses like Double W’s, Dandridge and Foxtail Hill in the opener.

However, all three will surely have to go some to beat last year’s winner, VANITEUX, who is 6lbs lower today. He is also starting only his second race since a wind operation and it will be disappointing if he can’t register his first win for David Pipe here.

The big threats are the Brain Ellison pair of FOREST BIHAN and Contre Tous, who are at opposite ends of the handicap. Slight preference is for the more proven performer, Forest Bihan, who was successful off today’s mark on his re-appearance.

Vaniteux (ew)1.45 Ayr9/2Bet365
Forest Bihan (ew)1.45 Ayr9/1Bet365

All odds quoted are subject to change

Dawn Homes Novices’ Championship Handicap Chase     

The novices’ handicap chase that follows looks a really tricky puzzle to solve.

It might be worth taking a chance on another Ellison runner, BALLYCRYSTAL, who is unexposed at this trip and who looks well treated with other horses we fancy, Keeper Hill and Braqueur D’or.

A case can also be made for outsiders CROSSHUE BOY and Petrou, with the former getting the vote as he may relish this better ground having been slogging through very wet going in Ireland over the winter. He could also improve for the longer trip.

Ballycrystal (ew)2.20 Ayr16/1Bet365
Crosshue Boy (ew)2.20 Ayr25/1Unibet

All odds quoted are subject to change

QTS Scottish Champion Hurdle     

There’s a fascinating renewal of the Scottish Champion Hurdle at 2.55pm and we think the all-conquering Gordon Elliott yard can take another big prize here courtesy of BRELADE, who’ll love the ground. He caught our eye in the County Hurdle before fading late on, on unsuitably soft ground.

FLYING TIGER also hated the going that day and will surely be seen in a much better light here on a track that will also play more to his strengths, whilst the Nicky Henderson pair of VERDANA BLUE and Charlie Parcs also hold strong claims.

Verdana Blue is particularly interesting now she has her conditions again and Henderson thought enough of her to keep her in the Champion Hurdle until conditions turned against the mare.

Brelade (win)2.55 Ayr14/1Bet365
Flying Tiger (ew)2.55 Ayr8/1Bet365
Verdana Blue (ew)2.55 Ayr11/2Bet365

All odds quoted are subject to change

Jordan Electrics Ltd Future Champion Novices’ Chase     

Another mare, Mia’s Storm, has a big chance of taking the Future Champions Novices’ Chase, but BIGMARTRE has almost as a strong a claim on the formbook. The worry is his yard’s lack of recent winners, but he is worth chancing at the prices.

Bigmartre (ew)3.30 Ayr9/2Bet365

All odds quoted are subject to change

Coral Scottish Grand National Handicap Chase     

The big race, the Scottish National, follows and a case can be made for at least half of the 29 runners.

Trainers Colin Tizzard and Neil Mulholland have big claims with their multiple entries and you could easily be tempted into backing all five of their representatives such is their appeal on paper.

Of the quintet, THE YOUNG MASTER really stands out as he appeared to be coming back to his best when sixth in the Kim Muir at Cheltenham. He’ll love the ground and has plummeted down the weights to a very appealing mark.

The two Sizing’s look the pick for Tizzard and if SIZING CODELCO‘s effort at Aintree last time out can be believed he could spring a surprise. It could be that this is his time of year and he won big handicaps at Aintree and Punchestown in quick succession last spring.

SIZING TENNESSE is the choice of Robbie Power and he ran a blinder to finish third in the National Hunt Chase on his last start. That proved his stamina and the better ground will be in his favour as he just failed to last home on soft at Cheltenham. Novices do well in the race and this horse has held his form all season despite the ups and downs of his yard.

There are dangers everywhere you look including Doing Fine, Looking Well, Silsol, Label Des Obeaux and Fagan, but for those looking for one at a monster price we’d suggest either Joe Farrell or ALZAMMAAR.

The former, being by Presenting, should improve for the change of surface, but we are continually drawn to Alzammaar for some reason. He had some decent staying form over hurdles and just looks unexposed as a chaser. His price differs vastly amongst bookmakers with some going as low as 25/1 and others as high as 66/1, while both Paddy Power and Ladbrokes are offering 6 places for each-way bets.

The Young Master (ew)4.05 Ayr16/1Ladbrokes
Sizing Codelco (ew)4.05 Ayr33/1Paddy Power
Sizing Tennesse (ew)4.05 Ayr16/1Paddy Power
Alzammaar (ew)4.05 Ayr66/1Paddy Power

All odds quoted are subject to change

Greatwood Greenham Stakes     

Over at Newbury, flat racing fans can enjoy some decent action from the Berkshire circuit, with a trio of Group 3s on the card.  The most interesting of them is the Greenham, where Expert Eye looks to get his career back on track. At a short price, he doesn’t appeal as a betting option, particularly given his yard’s relatively slow start to the season. Instead, back both JAMES GARFIELD and HEY GAMAN to win in the hope of an upset.

James Garfield (win)3.10 Newbury3/1Bet365
Hey Gaman (win)3.10 Newbury4/1Bet365

All odds quoted are subject to change

Greatwood Spring Cup Handicap     

The Spring Cup is a better betting heat and the drying ground should suit TONY CURTIS who has the not inconsiderable help of Ryan Moore from the saddle.

GILGAMESH and ELUSIVE HEIGHTS are the other pair we like and Paddy Power are offering 5 places for each-way bets on this race.

Tony Curtis (ew)3.45 Newbury11/1Paddy Power
Gilgamesh (ew)3.45 Newbury12/1Paddy Power
Elusive Heights (ew)3.45 Newbury40/1Paddy Power