Good morning all,
Inside today’s main piece. I look at Saturday's Relkeel Hurdle at Kempton. Plus, I have a selection from Ffos Las. But first I take a brief look back at the career of the newly retired Might Bite.
Might Bite Retires
Nicky Henderson announced yesterday that Might Bite had run his last race and in truth it wasn’t the weeks most surprising racing news. The former high-class chaser was last seen in action when pulling up in the Grand Sefton Stakes at Aintree. I had speculated after that race that retirement probably beckoned for the horse.
A winner of three of his five starts over hurdles. It was going over fences that showed him at his best. The high point of his novice season was beating stablemate Whisper in the RSA Novices’ Chase at the 2017 Cheltenham Festival. For most of that race he put in a superb round of jumping for novice and coming to the last was 10 lengths clear of his rivals. However, he will always be most remembered for idling on the run in before veering violently to his right and almost throwing the race away.
Two races earlier he had again put in a tremendous exhibition of jumping in the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase at Kempton before falling at the last. He beat Frodon on his seasonal reappearance the following season before going on to win the King George VI at Kempton and, looked to be travelling like the winner two out in the Gold Cup but was outstayed by Native River. He ended that season with a seven-length win over Bristol De Mai in the Grade 1 Betway Bowl at Aintree.
That was the last race he won and his form nosed dived after. A high-class chaser at his best but with quirks. I’m glad he’s retired though as it’s sad to see a horse still racing when he clearly isn’t really in love with the game.
The Grade 2 Relkeel Hurdle (2:20) should have been run at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day. However, that meeting was abandoned and the race has been rescheduled for Kempton on Saturday.
Nine have been declared for the race and the ante post betting is headed by McFabulous. The 7-year-old finished on his 3rd of 10 in the Long-Distance Hurdle at Newbury. He was beaten by Thyme Hill and Paisley Park that day looking like he found 3m too far. The drop back to 2m 5f should suit and he’s the one to beat.
Indefatigable winner of the Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival was a disappointing 6/4 favourite when only third on her seasonal reappearance in a mares only Listed race at Kempton 47-days ago. The 8-year-old is better than that form and a return to her best gives the mare each way claims.
On a day when not much appeals from a betting perspective. I have one fancy running at Ffos Las this afternoon.
3:28 – Don Herbager is a maiden after eight starts under rules. Two of those starts over the larger obstacles have come this season. He finished ½ length runner-up at Lingfield on his chase debut, before finishing a close-up 3rd of 14 here over 2m 5f. The 7-year-old is up 5lb for that effort but still looks competitively weighted. The step up to 3m should suit and he goes well on testing ground.
Don Herbager – 100/30 @ Coral & Ladbrokes
Good luck with your Thursday bets.
John Burke is the tipster behind the long standing Victor Value service you can join him here – https://victorvalue.uk