In a race where majority of the runners have few secrets from the handicapper, the two potentially well-treated novices, MA DU FOU (best price 8/1)
and TYCOON PRINCE (best price 10/1)
make plenty of appeal. The former has been well campaign by Warren Greatrex this season, picking up three nice prizes on the way, but following a gutsy success in the Sidney Banks Memorial at Huntingdon last time out, he looks ready for a step up in competition. Having accounted for subsequent Betfair Hurdle hero, Agrapart (now rated 150), on soft ground at Ffos Las earlier in the campaign, he appears particularly well handicapped on his first run in this sphere off a mark of 139 and arriving here fresher than most, a bold show looks on the cards.
The latter, similarly, should arrive here with a spring in his step having not run since December and even though he got beaten fair and square by Bellshill on that day, the fact that connections thought him good enough to tackle Grade 2 company suggests he also might turn out to be better than a pure handicapper. Although it remains unclear whether 2m 4f is his trip, if he’s ever going to get it, surely it will be around this sharp, flat track.