Looking at the racing at Haydock yesterday it appeared that the horses would have been better equipped with wellies than racing plates but there is a silver lining to every cloud and WESTREN WARRIOR is fancied to pay for the weekend’s expenses in the Betfair Exchange “Fixed Brush” Handicap Hurdle at Haydock (2.25).
The Westerner gelding shaped with plenty of promise on his reappearance over three miles at Cheltenham last month when sixth, beaten seven lengths, to Golden Doyen in a highly competitive handicap on good ground that wouldn’t have been exactly to his favour but it will have accomplished the all important necessity of blowing away the cobwebs after an absence since March.
Westren Warrior opened his account with a 30 length defeat of Get Ready Freddy over two miles and three and a half furlongs in December and stepped up markedly on that effort in the Listed Lanzarote Handicap Hurdle over two miles and five furlongs at Kempton in January when runner-up, beaten only two lengths, to Yala Enki with Ibis Du Rheu and Brother Tedd behind. Next time, at Huntingdon in a Pertemps Qualifier over three miles and a furlong. Dr Richard Newland’s gelding found Taj Badalandabad a length too good off a mark of 133 and could be that just doesn’t quite see out three miles plus.
Westren Warrior races off a 3lb higher mark and with his profound preference for anything approaching heavy he looks well worth a bet with the very much in form Brian Hughes in the plate. Dr Newland is an astute purveyor of the programme book and he could well have laid out Westren Warrior specially for this valuable handicap and Westren Warrior looks worth a 2pt investment.£10 Free Credit and a £500 Deposit Bonus
It may not be the most original selection but YANWORTH looks worthy of support in the Grade 2 Coral Hurdle at Ascot (2.40).
The Alan King-trained gelding was the very impressive winner of his first four races over hurdles last season which included a two and three quarter length victory from Charbel in the Grade 2 Sky et Supreme Novices Hurdle over two mile here in December and his only defeat came at the hands of Yorkhill in the Grade 1 Neptune Investements Management Novices Hurdle over two miles and five furlongs at the Cheltenham Festival in March when beaten only a length and three quarters. Yanworth goes well when fresh and he is fancied to make a winning reappearance with a 2pt investment the recommendation.