13:50 Navan

JIVING JERRY (best price 9/1) was fully entitled to need the run on his return to action after a 106-day break here last time out and with the feeling that today’s race represents a slight drop in class, James Barcoe’s gelding can go a long way to prove that he’s significantly overpriced on the morning lists.

A model of consistency last season, notching up two wins to go along with numerous placed efforts on the way, the son of Jeremy can put his level of improvement down to connections’ decision to step him up in trip and with one of his best efforts coming in the ‘Brown Lad’ Hurdle at Naas over 2m4f, he proved he could handle the hustle and bustle of a big-field, Grade 2 handicap over that sort of distance.

Top of today’s pile on the basis of that performance a year ago, he should be somewhere approaching peak fitness following two runs to get his cogs well oiled, and the seven-year-old deserves to the played accordingly.

Jiving Jerry - 0.5pts e/w @ 9/1

14:20 Navan

There was plenty to like about the way FLASH DE TOUZAINE (best price 12/1) made a winning reappearance at Galway last time out and with that coming-of-age effort a sure sign that Liz Doyle’s gelding is heading in the right direction both mentally and in terms of quality, he can make his biggest statement by putting up a bold show in his toughest test so far to date.

Still a maiden over fences at the start of this season, the son of Kapgarde wasted no time in shedding that unwanted tag and in doing so, he gave out the sort of signals that he might just be a different horse to the one we’d seen before. More aggressively ridden at Ballybrit, the seven-year-old seemed happier bowling along towards the front end and when asked to find the necessary reserves up the hill after the last, he saw out the trip in ready fashion.

Fourth to Velvet Elvis in the Final of the EBF Novices’ Handicap Series over today’s C&D last season, he technically has to find quite a bit on the evidence of that form but, with his new-found confidence and, in particular, a different tactical approach all seen as game-changing adjustments, this lightly-raced type looks one of the few capable of preventing the Gordon Elliot domination in this sought-after prize.

Flash De Touzaine - 0.5pts e/w

15:00 Carlisle

UNCLE ALASTAIR (best price 6/1) ended last season with a bit of a damp squib effort at Perth, but if he can re-raise his game again to the heights that saw him chase home Papa Tango Charly is a quality novices’ handicap chase here four months earlier, Nicky Richards’ gelding has a chance to finally getting off the mark over fences.

Very smart over hurdles as a novice, the 10-year-old has been beset with wind issues in the last few seasons and that’s one of the reason why we’ve only seen him on a limited basis. However, his performance here 11 months ago told us he still has plenty of ability despite his ailments and following that effort, he went on to chase home the very smart Erne River in a decent novices’ chase at Wetherby.

Never at the races around a sharp track on quicker Spring ground at Scoon Palace when last see, as a result, the son of Midnight Legend returns to action having been dropped to a potentially lenient mark and safe in the knowledge that some of his best efforts have occurred when he’s been fresh, today’s trip, track and ground should allow him to put up a bold display.

Uncle Alastair - 1pt e/w