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Calculated Risk can score for Ryedale trainer John Quinn
JOHN QUINN, with a useful team heading to Cheltenham next week, aims to confirm that his Norton stable is in the best of form at Sandown today.
Quinn saddles Calculated Risk, who had been considered for one of the handicaps at the Festival but turns out instead in the Micheal Afflick Juvenile Handicap Hurdle, which opens the Sandown card.
Dougie Costello’s mount is highly regarded in the Quinn camp. He won first time out at Doncaster, finished unplaced at Huntingdon next time on bad ground, but finished a creditable third at Kelso on his latest outing.
The better the ground, the better the chance of getting back into the winning groove for Calculated Risk as he does not relish muddy conditions.
He is expected to go well for Quinn, who is preparing to saddle Countrywide Flame in next week’s Champion Hurdle and Kashmir Peak and Hidden Justice in the Triumph Hurdle, a race he won 12 months ago with Countrywide Flame.
The £70,000 Paddy Power Imperial Cup is the feature race on the card, and Paul Nicholls and Tony McCoy have a good shout in a wide open contest with Mr Mole.
Winner of two of his three races this season, Mr Mole may lack the experience of some of his rivals, but he is a smart prospect and even a hefty weight may not stop him emerging triumphant.
Barrakilla, who has been in fine form, has every chance of completing a hat-trick of wins for Evan Williams in the EBF Novices’ Handicap Hurdle Final, while Rigadin De Beauchene is fancied to lift the Download The Paddy Power App Handicap Chase.
Tough, talented and consistent, Venetia Williams’ gelding finished a gallant second to Well Refreshed in Haydock’s Grand National Trial on his latest outing. He remains in excellent heart and hails from a yard in similarly good form.
At Market Rasen tomorrow, a chance is taken on Crowning Jewel, who carries the nap in the £12,000 Calverts Carpets York Handicap Hurdle, the feature race on the card.
It is three months since Crowning Jewel last ran, so it may well prove that he will benefit from this comeback outing. But, on his best form, he is in with a serious shout of clinching the prize for trainer Keith Reveley and his jockey son James.
Cara Court has been in stupendous form lately for West Yorkshire trainer Joanne Foster. He was a 66-1 winner over hurdles at Catterick and followed up by no less than 42 lengths in a chase at Sedgefield. He looks up to defying a 7lb penalty and completing a hat-trick.
• Tom O’Ryan is hosting a Cheltenham preview tomorrow at the New York Working Men’s Club in Blossom Street, York, at 7.30pm, and the guest panellists include Colin Russell of the Racing Post, and race-reader Andrew Sheret. Admission is £3.
1.30 Calculated Risk (NAP), 2.05 Barrakilla, 2.40 Rigadin De Beauchene, 3.15 Mr Mole, 3.50 Centasia, 4.25 Ciceron, 5.00 Oscar Davy.
Today’s other meetings: Chepstow, Ayr and Wolverhampton.
Market Rasen tomorrow
2.20 Spirit Of Shankly, 2.50 Stormy Oscar, 3.20 The Big Freeze, 3.50 Crowning Jewel (NAP), 4.20 Cara Court, 4.50 Roc de Guye, 5.20 Iktiview.
Tomorrow’s other meeting: Warwick.