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Hunter Chase - 4.35 Doncaster

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Went with the wrong one yesterday as Road To Rome was way below the form he showed a couple of years ago. Obviously he will come on for the run, but even so he clearly isn't as good as he was and I would be thinking twice before backing him again. That meant Duhallow Tornado had a very easy task, but with the blinkers on he looked a completely different horse from the one we saw last week. In addition to travelling well he also jumped well and ran out a comfortable winner. The 2nd has run well, but I wouldn't want to go overboard on the form. If you did happen to back Teeton Surprise e/w then amazingly you did collect on the e/w part which given he was tailed off entering the home straight was some effort. He was well beaten again though so hard to say there was any promise in the run.

Onto to today's race at Doncaster and it looks a pretty decent contest. Captain Cattistock is favourite as I write this and runs in this race for the 2nd year running after unseating his then owner at the 2nd last. I think he probably would have won as I thought he was idling as he had been in front for a long time and wasn't helped by Mustmeetalady's (who also runs today) departing at the 5th. He ran well when 3rd behind Sametegal and Porlock Bay at Wincanton on his debut for the yard and I think a repeat or an improvement should see him go close.

Joe Farrell hasn't won since landing the 2018 Scottish National and although this is a massive step down in grade I don't really fancy him on what he has done this season. We know he will stay well and last seasons form would be good enough to go close, but he's down to a mark of 132 now and he would need to pretty much run up to that sort of mark to win this.

Law Of Gold is the improver in the field and managed a very creditable 7th in last year's Foxhunter. He was quite well fancied by some as he only went off a 12/1 shot, but for me he ran as well as could have been hoped. He won the 2019 John Corbet Cup at Stratford and was impressive on his seasonal return at Horseheath last season so we know he can perform 1st up. The concern for me is the ground though. He is a good ground horse and although it could dry out I still just wonder if it might be on the testing side for him. We also have to consider that this is no doubt a prep run ahead of Cheltenham next month.

Silsol is an interesting contender and his last rules run was when he was 12th in the Scottish National won by Joe Farrell. He had one run last season when he won and then in December he was a staying on 3rd after getting outpaced. Key for me is the jockey change as his jockey in those two point runs has only had 9 rides so Lorcan Williams is going to be a big improvement on Miss Orttewell. We know he stays well and I don't think he will be far away.

The other interesting one for me is Different Gravey who has a good horse for Nicky Henderson in the past. He went pointing in 2018 and won all 3 starts including beating the useful Asockastar by 20L. He missed 2019 and the 2020 season only returning at Wadebridge in December when finishing 3rd. He wasn't given an overly hard ride that day and given it was his first run for so long I thought it was a pleasing effort. Again the jockey change to Harry Skelton is a huge step up from Miss Emsley who rode him last time. I guess the concern would be stamina as his rules runs were over shorter, but otherwise he looks capable of a bold bid.

It's hard to make a case for anything else. I did actually put up Mustmeetalady in this last year, but he has left O'Neill's yard now and it is a more competitive renewal. Wykham has no chance as he can't even land a maiden point. Big Casino won at Maisemore in October, but Carter McKay has done nothing for the form since and at 15 it is hard to see how he can win this. To be fair to him though the 3rd at Musselburgh a year ago was a fair effort. Monbeg Gold pulled up at Warwick last time and is hard to fancy. Absainte is a likeable mare, but this is too good for her and Jenkins looks nowhere near as good as he was.

Apart from possibly Joe Farrell none of the other top 5 in the betting would be a huge surprise. I can see why the early 7/1 on Law Of Gold went and he is the progressive horse, but the ground first time out just puts me off actually backing him. Captain Cattistock has a good chance, but he looks around the right price to me. Therefore I am going to take a chance on Silsol and Different Gravey. Silsol we know will stay well and will benefit massively from the jockey change. Different Gravey ran perfectly well on his first start for getting on 2 years in December and again the jockey change is huge. Yes the stamina is a slight concern, but that is factored in his price for me.

Silsol 1pt @ 9/2 with Bet365

Different Gravey 1pt e/w @ 11/1 with Bet365

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