Four To Follow: Kracking Kelso

On what seems to be a quiet, almost normal, Saturday, there’s plenty of competitive action up in the Scottish Borders. All eyes are on Kelso for some good, clean fun with no Cheltenham chat in sight. Plus Newbury hosts the Greatwood Gold Cup alongside.



Nice To See You, To See You…

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2:17 – Premier Novice’s Hurdle (Grade Two) – Brucio @ 6/1 (BetVictor)

Stuart Crawford and Scottish racing go almost hand in hand. He’s second in the trainers’ championship at Ayr. When he sends one over, particularly in the double green colours, it’s one to keep an eye on. Brucio won a rather average maiden hurdle at Catterick before winning at the DRF in the Listed Mares handicap hurdle by six lengths. With Jango Baie carrying a penalty, and Brucio with an allowance, the balance suggests that Brucio is top rated, and her price should be taken advantage of.

With Nicky Henderson’s horses not firing as well as they should be, Personal Ambition looks a more worthy favourite for Ben Pauling. Heavy ground defeated him at Sandown in his last Graded race but beating Jingko Blue in his debut over hurdles as paid dividends. He is shorter than Brucio but carries more value than the fav. 4/1 (BetVictor, Boylesports).


Salsa, Shimmy and Shake

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2:50 – Morebattle Hurdle (Premier Handicap) – Salsada @ 12/1 (BetVictor, Betfred)

Salsada comes into this race of a 315 day break. She’s wanted to run three times this season already but has been withdrawn for a number of reasons. She was last seen finishing fifth in the Scottish Champion Hurdle won by Rubaud who has franked the form to some extent this season. Her run before that saw her finishing second to Epatante, so she’s a good horse in her own right. She comes in on a four-pound lower mark which makes her an appealing wight for the race.

Anyharminasking holds an entry for the County Hurdle and is looking for the £100,000 bonus of winning the Morebattle and, maybe, the County. Jonjo O’Neill has had an up and down time with him this season, but his rating of 136 did put him second at Newbury. It’s clear from the last couple of runs that two-and-a-half miles hasn’t suited so well, but the drop back should be better in order to prep for the big handicap a week on Friday. 16/1 (BetVictor, Boylesports).

Bass Rock has been chasing for a while and Sandy Thomson has elected to drop him back to hurdles. Which has left him subject to a massive gamble. He was last seen over hurdles at Ayr in 2022 when winning over further. The handicapper has taken his chasing form into account and has dropped him three pounds. This makes little to no sense and is a perfect opportunity for Bass Rock. 25/1 (Boylesports).


Sometimes, The Old Ones Are The Best

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3:25 – Premier Chase (Listed) – Aye Right @ 3/1 (General)

Aye Right is one tough old horse. Monbeg Genius is being prepped for the National, but it’s likely he should get in off a mark of 147. It looks more logical for Aye Right. This race is his Gold Cup. He’s had a superb, yet unlucky season, with two seconds and a third. There’s no stopping his tenacity and will have been prepped to be in the form of his life for today.



Give It Some Gust

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1:55 – BetVictor Greatwood Gold Cup Chase (Premier Handicap) – Gustavian @ 12/1 (General)

The ground at Newbury is bottomless. Friday’s last race was almost won by a furlong by a horse who relishes heavy ground. Therefore, the handicap element disappears and heavy ground horses are to be hammered. Gustavian has by far and away the best record on the ground. He’s also handicapped incredibly well after unseating at the second. So long as he doesn’t do that again, he’ll be bang up there.

Grandeur D’Ame is a much shorter price and seemed to be having a good season before unseating at the first on Trials Day at Cheltenham. He’s versatile on all sorts of ground, including heavy which he’s won on this season. He remains on a ridiculous rating after being dropped three pounds for finishing fourth in a big handicap at Cheltenham. 4/1 (William Hill, BetVictor, BetUK).

The very best of luck!

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