The front pages are dominated by the arrival of the Omicrom variant. Who knows what impact that will have on us in the coming weeks? However. one thing we have learnt in the past 18 months is not to second guess governments or indeed the virus in these crazy times. So, it’s a case of keep calm and hope for the best.
On the racing pages the big news yesterday was concerned Saturday’s Grade 1 Tingle Creek at Sandown. Last week’s news that Shishkin wouldn’t be running. Has now been replaced by the possibility of a clash between Nube Negra and Chacun Pour Soi. The latter is the 6/5 favourite with the sponsors Betfair with Nube Negra (2/1). Paul Nicholls will likely be represented by Greaneteen (7/2) and Hitman (20/1) in his bid for record breaking 12th success in the race. More on that race and other weekend thoughts in tomorrow’s column.
Inside today main piece. You’ll find a handful horses that could be worth adding to the tracker from last weekend’s action. Plus, I have a selection from this afternoon’s meeting at Lingfield.
Annsam – Evan Williams
Annsam built on his promising Kempton seasonal reappearance when a 5 ¼ length 3rd of 11 to Earlofthecotswolds at Newbury on Saturday. The 6-year-old adopted up his customary front running tactics and made a bold bid from the front. Headed two out he battled on well to the line and pulled nicely clear of the rest. He’s likely on a winnable mark over hurdles but this should tee him up for a return to fences. He remains with potential over the larger obstacles on sharper tracks. Easier ground won’t inconvenience him either as he’s 3-4 on soft.
A couple caught my eye in Saturday’s Ladbroke Trophy.
Remastered – David Pipe
As I mentioned in yesterday column. Remastered was still going well when coming down four out in the Ladbroke Trophy. It was to early to say definitively that he would have won but I think he would have gone mightily close. Hopefully this mishap won’t have dented his confidence. As there’s surely a valuable staying handicap chase in him off his present mark on softer ground than he got on Saturday.
Copperhead – Colin Tiizzard
Copperhead travelled much better than he had done last year’s race and was still in contention when making a bad mistake at the 15th. The 7-year-old was pulled up before two out but there was plenty of encouragement to be taken from his return to action. He’s 0-5 on his seasonal reappearance so would likely have needed this run and if you look at his record between December & February, he’s 5 wins from 9 runs 56% +18.25. More importantly the Tizzard yard is in much better form than it was last season. He seems likely to be eased a bit in the weights and there’s handicap chase to be won with him over the winter.
Sam’s Adventure – Brian Ellison
Finished a well beaten 7th off 11 in Saturday’s Rehearsal Chase at Newcastle. However, I think this will still prove to have been a stepping stone to races over further than 3m later in the winter. The 9-year-old won last season’s Tommy Whittle handicap Chase at Haydock. Before going onto success in the 4m Eider Chase. All seven of his career wins have come on soft or heavy ground and even though the rain had softened the ground at Newcastle. He needs it much deeper. His form figures between December & March, on soft or heavy going read 1121412711U1. He should drop a bit more in the weights after this effort and is one to note when the mud is flying again.
Just the three meetings today. There’s all-weather action at Lingfield and Newcastle and a jumps fixture at Southwell.
2:15 – Caribou is the outsider of the five runners in the overnight betting but has a better chance than his odds suggest. Granted he was well below form at Chelmsford (1m) 19-days ago. However, he’s now 1lb below his last winning mark and looks worth a try over today’s 1m 2f.
Caribou – 7/1 @Bet365.
Good luck with your Tuesday bets.