We begin this weeks’ Saturday Weekender over hurdles at Cartmel where we take in a Class 3 handicap. With three last time out winners all vying for favouritism it promises to be a competitive affair and of the three preference is for Honey Pound. He has been raised 7lbs for a two length win earlier this month but the runner-up Welcometothejungle had won previously and was a ready winner again on Thursday so the form holds up well. Furthermore, jockey Richard Johnson boasts a 100% win rate when partnered with Honey Pound and returns to the saddle for todays’ race.
Chebsey Beau has only finished outside the first three in one out of eight runs over hurdles so cannot be discounted but both career wins have come over twenty furlongs and has attempted todays’ shorter distance four times without success and has been raised 10lbs for his latest win.
Miss Macnamara broke her duck over hurdles at the eighth attempt in July but, as with Chebsey Beau, this win came over two and a half miles and she has failed in four attempts over todays’ trip. A 7lbs rise takes her to a career high mark and she looks more likely to be fighting it out for minor honours today.
Honey Pound (E/W if 9/2+)
Scrutiny arrives here looking to complete a hat-trick after two wins in two days at the back end of July. He’s had a few weeks off to recover from those exertions and although has a 4lbs rise to contend with the runner-up of the latest race has won since and jockey Rebecca Heptonstall offsets the rise thanks to her 5lbs claim.
Cornborough won on his racecourse debut but has gone eight runs since without managing to get his nose in front again. Two placed efforts this month suggest he is in decent form but has gone back up 1lbs and lost his 3lbs claimer for a half-length second so may find himself up against it today.
Felix De Vega is worthy of consideration having placed over ten furlongs previously and, although is yet to win in ten runs he teams up with jockey Joanna Mason who has a 50% win rate when riding for Mick Easterby so cannot be discounted.
Of the remainder, Almuhalab is another who placed last time out and could benefit from the experience of Serena Brotherton.
Scrutiny (E/W if 9/2+)
Zaeem immediately catches the eye on current form, looking to make it four wins in a row. However his record over a mile is less than impressive (just two wins from twelve) and with a further 7lbs rise to contend with coupled with a step up in class for todays’ race he could be vulnerable today.
Our Boy Jack has a 5lbs rise for a win last time out over todays’ trip but has been competitive off a mark of 85 previously while Simply Shining is effectively below her last winning mark if taking in to account Hayley Irvine’s 7lbs claim but preference is for last years’ winner Karaka Jack.
Our selection won twice last year over course and distance, off marks of 75 and 78 respectively, and races today off 72. Graham Lee was in the saddle for both these wins and he returns to the rekindle the partnership today. With a respectable fourth placed finish here at the beginning of the month he looks to be coming back to form and could be in prime position to take advantage today.
Karaka Jack (E/W if 9/2+)