It’s 888Sport Chase Day at Kempton on Saturday 23 February and we’ve got a free tip for you for the 888Sport Handicap Chase at 3.00. There’s a good-looking supporting card too, so we’ve also got analysis and free tips for you for the 888Sport Pendil Novices’ Chase, the 888Sport Looking To Take ‘Em On Adonis Juvenile Hurdle, and the Sky Bet Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle.
The last two renewals of the Grade 2 888Sport Pendil Novices’ Chase have been won by Cyrname and Frodon, just two of seven Paul Nicholls’ trained winners in the last decade. Despite that, this year’s representative from the Nicholls stable Secret Investor looks up against it. His mark of 145 is below that achieved by seven of the last 10 winners coming into the race and also 8lb shy of the mark already achieved by Bags Groove.
Secret Investor does get 5lb from Bags Groove but would still be 3lb better off if this were a handicap, whilst Bags Groove also beat him by nine lengths off level-weights earlier in the season. The classier penalised horses have also fared best in recent renewals, with the last six winners all carrying a penalty of between 4lb and 7lb.
Free Tip For The 888Sport Pendil Novices’ Chase:
Bags Groove @ 2.88 BetVictor, WilliamHill
The 888Sport Take ‘Em On Adonis Juvenile Hurdle is another race that Paul Nicholls has enjoyed great success in during the last decade, having won it four times including with useful horses off the flat like Zarkandar and Zubayr.
He sets punters a tricky puzzle here with three entries Ecco, Red Force One, and Deadline Diva, but jockey bookings suggest that Ecco could be the one with Harry Cobden booked to ride. The trio also face plenty of other useful types from top tables including Nicky Henderson’s French import Fusil Raffles, whilst Alan King has trained the last two winners and saddles Praeceps and Giving Glances.
Despite all of those horses from leading trainers, it could be worth giving an each-way squeak to Petit Palais for trainer Tom George who won the 2012 renewal with Baby Mix. He won one of his three starts on the flat and only finished about seven lengths behind Christmas Hurdle winner Verdana Blue when last seen in that sphere. He also took care of an odds-on Paul Nicholls favourite on his hurdling debut and there could be plenty more to come.
Free Tips For The 888Sport Take ‘Em On Adonis Juvenile Hurdle:
Petit Palais (Each-Way) @ 9.00 Bet365, Coral, WilliamHill, 10Bet, SkyBet, SportPesa
The Sky Bet Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle is a fascinating contest featuring several horses that could run in the Supreme Novice’s Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.
The Alan King-trained Scarlet Dragon actually finished second to Global Citizen in last year’s renewal on his hurdles debut and this high-class flat horse could easily take a hand in the finish this season after notching up his first win over hurdles in preparation for another shot.
But Scarlet Dragon isn’t officially the top-rated horse in the race as that accolade belongs to Rouge Vif who was second to Mister Fisher over course and distance at Christmas. That why it’s interesting that Mr Fisher’s trainer Nicky Henderson is happy to take Rouge Vif on again with Angels Breath.
The rumours before Angels Breath made his debut for Henderson at Ascot where that he was a serious horse and he proved that with a clear-cut success from a useful yardstick. A 5lb penalty certainly doesn’t make his life any easier but, with Henderson winning the race with three penalised horses in the last six-years, those that have backed him in from 3/1 to odds-on this week will be disappointed if he doesn’t win.
Free Tip For The Sky Bet Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle:
Angels Breath @ 1.91 Ladbrokes, Coral, WilliamHill, 10Bet, SkyBet, SportPesa, 888Sport
For a well-established handicap, the 888Sport handicap Chase doesn’t highlight any important stats that can help us narrow down the field, so it could simply be a case of finding the best handicapped horse.
Talkischeap is a candidate after chasing home some useful rivals in novice chases this season including top novice La Bague Au Roi and a mark of 145 may underestimate him by five or six pounds.
Despite that, Glen Rocco could be even better handicapped after he won over course and distance last time by 23 lengths and a 13lb rise in the weights is unlikely to stop here. That’s because he’s even more interesting based on his second behind Glen Forsa (getting 4lb) the time before that, as that horse has since demolished a 152-rated rival by 19 lengths, with a 139 rated rival even further back. That makes Glen Rocco’s mark of 137 look potentially lenient and a light-weight should also help him take advantage if he is leniently handicapped.
Free Tip For The 888SPort Handicap Chase:
Glen Rocco @ 5.00 Betfair SB, Ladbrokes, Coral