Architect Tips has selected four tips for today's racing, including three runners at Newmarket and one at Perth.
The Remembering Tim Hardie Novices' Limited Handicap Chase hasn’t attracted a big field but it certainly is a fascinating line-up with three last-time-out winners. However, I like the look of chasing debutant ONE TRUE KING (best price 11-4), who has the attributes, size and scope to advance his smart hurdling form in this sphere and could be a tough cookie to crack in what looks a hot race for the grade.
This enormous six-year-old landed maiden/novice hurdles either side of determined efforts in a pair of highly-competitive Cheltenham handicaps last autumn and was finding plenty when asked for maximum efforts at Ascot until making a bad mistake at the second last at Ascot, handing the initiative to the eventual winner, Midnight River. He failed to match that form on his final start of the campaign but a six-month break will have done him the world of good and he looks tailor-made for this scenario. His main danger might appear to be Pay The Piper, who won three of his four hurdle outings last season, but the selection is in receipt of a stack of weight from his main market protagonists and, providing he jumps proficiently, this son of Getaway might take some stopping.
Max Vega didn’t enjoy the breaks when a luckless fifth at York last month but he’s unproven over this trip and it might be worth sticking with the reliable ROBERTO ESCOBARR (best price 5-1), who doubled his tally when scoring in this grade at York in June and should make another bold bid under Tom Marquand.
He hardly runs a bad race when he gets beaten and that was evident when a close-up fourth in the John Smith's Silver Cup Stakes at York before his creditable sixth back there when last spotted. This is his first foray at two-miles but the way he’s kept on strongly in each event suggests he’ll relish the distance as he looks all about stamina. Tom gets on well with him and, with everything pointing towards this trip being the making of him, the top-weight must have an excellent chance here.
The one compelling participant, who does seem to have been overlooked, is the very capable NAYEF ROAD (best price 7-2), who could easily win this if performing anywhere near his best.
Mark Johnston’s five-year-old hasn’t been at his very best this year, but has still performed to a useful standard, including when third behind Stradivarius in the Doncaster Cup when last sighted. The last time he ran at this venue was when a four-length second to Spanish Mission in a Group Three and that is by far the best piece of form on offer. He generally keeps stronger company than this, who has placed multiple times in Group One’s and Group Two’s and while he’s not won for a while, that shouldn’t be taken as a negative given the endeavours he has been handed, and this consistent stayer, who’s stamina might just draw the sting from these rivals, could prove too hard to pass in the latter stages.
LOSTWITHIEL (best price 7-2) has a bit to prove at present on the back of two disappointing efforts at both Royal Ascot and on the July course here, but his earlier form makes him a dangerous animal to discount and he might be able to get back on track now reunited with Rossa Ryan for his in-form handler.
He won his first two starts around this trip and went close when second the next two times over 1m6f, including when just touched off by Global Storm who is now rated 104. That form alone gives him a chance and his record in single-runner fields now reads 122 so this smaller-field scenario might be what he wants at the moment. Rossa Ryan, who has a good record on the son of Camelot, is back in the plate and in the hope this less-demanding event has a positive difference, George Bouhey’s youngster might resume winning ways.