We begin today’s TV tips with a Grade Two Mare’s Hurdle, a race won by Annie Power last year. Four of the seven runners arrive on the back of a win last time out and the strongest of these looks to be Pass The Time. She could only manage fourth in this race last year but returned a month later to win over course and distance and has a win rate of 66% over today’s trip. With AP McCoy again in the saddle she looks sure to run a strong race but may have to settle for minor honours if Analifet hasn’t been adversely affected by her recent fall.
Early favourite Analifet started her career impressively with two wins from two but is yet to show the same form since returning from injury, although she did look to be travelling strongly and was looking ready to mount a challenge before falling two from home when last seen at Punchestown in December. She could prove to be the class act of the field here and despite the fall last time out she looks the likely winner to me.
Of the remainder, Favourite Girl takes a big step up in grade but has posted two impressive wins from her last three runs so warrants respect and could take advantage if the favourite fails to deliver.
Our first race at Cheltenham looks a tough one to decipher with many having attempted todays’ trip without success. It is also worth noting that most have raced here on numerous occasions but only Walkon and Sew On Target have ever recorded wins here, with the latter mentioned arriving here in much better form than the former.
Easter Day looks set to head the market but is also entered at Doncaster so at this stage has to be considered a doubtful runner. He last attempted todays’ trip almost two years ago but won in good style and has won twice since over slightly further. He could only manage third on his seasonal reappearance last month but ran well for a long way before getting tired on the run in. With five wins and one placed effort from nine attempts over jumps he looks to have a good chance if he runs today.
Annacotty has a 50% strike rate for finishes in the first three and was in great form this time last year. He hasn’t shown much since returning this season but is tried in cheekpieces for this but is definitely better than his two most recent runs suggest and the previous Group 1 winner could be the main beneficiary should Easter Day travel to Doncaster.
Annacotty (E/W if 5/1+)
Blaklion is the early market leader and arrives here looking to add another Group Two to his already impressive list of career wins. His only two losses came over shorter distances today when he tried to set the pace and was worn down in the last couple of furlongs. Back up in trip today he should be able to run a more patient race and put his stamina to good use like he did when winning at Cheltenham over three miles in December.
Zeroshadesofgrey notched up a hat-trick of wins over hurdles before only managing third when last seen at Cheltenham on New Years Day. Despite this, he has a 100% record here at Doncaster and also won on his only previous attempt over today’s trip so rates as a real danger to the favourite.
Present View is entered in the next televised race and looks likely to run at Cheltenham rather than here but would also be a real contender if he did take his place here.
Present View has only failed to finish in the first three places in one of his eleven career starts and is a previous course and distance winner, albeit over fences rather than hurdles. He looks a solid contender and has the benefit of form, consistency and experience but may be resigned to minor honours again if Value At Risk lives up to expectations.
Value At Risk could go off at evens or even odds-on looking at early forecasts but after watching how impressive he won at Newbury in December on his hurdling debut it isn’t difficult to see why he is likely to popular with punters. The only slight worry about backing the favourite is his relative inexperience over hurdles but if he arrives in the same frame of mind as his last run then he will prove extremely tough to beat.
In terms of each way value, both Vago Collonges and Robinsfirth both arrive in decent form and, along with Present View, could all be in the mix should the favourite disappoint.
Value At Risk (WIN)
Our final race at Doncaster sees fifteen scheduled to go to post in what should prove to be a fascinating contest. Both Royal Player and Grandads Horse arrive here looking for their respective hat-tricks and in wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see either win this, although in truth there are a number of likely contenders.
If In Doubt keeps the partnership with AP McCoy intact and was an impressive winner last time out at Catterick. He showed a great level of consistency over hurdles but has only attempted fences on three occasions and has made a couple of mistakes since tackling the larger obstacles, unseating the champion jockey at Exeter in November. At the prices he doesn’t represent good value so I am happy to look elsewhere.
Godsmejudge cannot be discounted despite being away from a racecourse since April last year. He hasn’t always shone on his seasonal reappearance but won on his only other attempt over todays’ trip and has finished in the first three on 66% of his career runs.
Night In Milan could only finish second behind Grandads Horse when last seen here in December but has won twice and placed twice from six runs here at Doncaster (he fell and was pulled up in the other two) so obviously has a liking for the track.
Night In Milan (E/W)
Grandads Horse (E/W)
We finish today’s TV tips with what looks to be an absolute corker where a case could be made for pretty much all of the field. Saphir De Rheu looks likely to head the market and is a fascinating addition to the race, reverting back to hurdles after struggling over fences. He notched up a hat-trick around this time last year, beating Whisper in the last of these races who went on to win twice after. The return to hurdling is a big positive but it is worth noting that he has never finished a race run over today’s trip before.
Reve De Sivola is the only course and distance winner and arrives on the back of a win when last seen but is hardly prolific either here at Cheltenham or over today’s trip so is likely to be racing for minor honours at best.
Un Temps Pour Tout has finished in the first three in all six of his career runs so far and beat Cole Harden by sixteen lengths at Ascot last February, albeit over a shorter distance than today. This will be his first race of the season but he has shown in the past that he is capable of running well after a break and he is the selection today.
Un Temps Pour Tout (WIN)