A cracking day’s racing in prospect. Two I tipped earlier – Lisp and Aso – I stand by them. Lisp will go off a good deal shorter than when I tipped him at 25/1 in January. The original running was lost to the flu scare last week and this rescheduling to Ascot (from Newbury) appears to have seen the majority of antepost bets voided. Frustratingly we have lost the 25/1 but he still makes some appeal at 9/1.
Stats-wise this race – The Betfair – has been dominated by 5 and 6 y-olds who have finished in the first three last time out and are in the first 7 in the market. I’m intrigued by the fact that King, who trains the 5-y-o Lisp, also runs William H Bonney, an 8-y-o who showed promise as a youngster and seems to have left it this late to deliver on it. He’s won his last two. He’s 28/1 with Betfair (EW first 5) and King must believe he has a much better chance than those odds suggest to be running him. I’ll have a saver on him EW.
Also at Ascot, Black Corton looks fine value at 11/4 to win the 2.10, and, as posted yesterday, I’ll stick with Aso at 16/1 for the Betfair Chase, with a third-of-stake saver on Waiting Patiently at 7/4.
At Haydock in the 1.55 I’m backing Kilcooley who has a 3-year layoff to overcome. This’ll be his first run for Nicky Richards, and I took a real shine to the horse when he won at Wetherby in 2016, backing him at big prices for the Stayers Hurdle. He pulled up in that race, suffering, I assume, the injury that has kept him off since. He’s capable of winning after a long layoff (that Wetherby victory was on the back of a 216 day absence) although this will test him to the full in that respect. But at around 9/1 I’m happy to chance it.
Finally, in the 3.35 at Haydock I’m backing Yala Enki. He’s one I usually avoid due to consistency problems. But he won first time out this season then ran a superb race last time in the Welsh National joining issue a long way from home under his weight of 11.11 and keeping on really well to get within 6 lengths of the winner Elegant Escape to whom he was conceding 3lbs. It was the performance of a very classy horse. He could do with softer ground in this, but he likes Haydock (14135) and should give a big run for the money.