Saturday Horse Racing Betting Tips
13:10 Sandown Tips
Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle (Class 2) – 2m7½f
Bridge North 1pt Win @ 9/2
Henry Daly was in flying form during the month of November, and he’s still operating at a good strike rate with 3 winners from his last 12 runners (25% SR). Plenty of his Horses have been coming on for their first run too, so there is plenty to like about the chances of Bridge North here.
This 6yo ran an eye-catching race on his return to the track at Aintree over 2m4f last month - where after the last he really started to get going, only being beaten 8 lengths in the end despite being swallowed up by the field at the 2nd last. That looks a decent enough race won by Peking Rose (133), and the form looks good considering A Different Kind (136) was 2nd, Petit Tonnerre (140) was 3rd, and Onefortheroad (135) was 4th.
Some of Bridge North’s from last season is also very good, as he was 2nd behind Green Book (135) at Ludlow in December last year, and in his two victories he beat Phantom Getaway (129) & Silver Flyer (123). Stepping back up to 3m should be the making of this Horse in Handicap company however, as last season he tried the trip twice in Graded events - firstly pulling up at Doncaster (but you can put a line through that because he went straight for a wind-op afterwards and won on his next start), and then secondly when 5th in the Grade 1 Sefton Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree - when outclassed but putting in a grand effort.
Bridge North’s Handicap rating of 126 certainly looks exploitable now despite this race being a little stronger than the Market Rasen equivalent he was supposed to run in recently before the meeting got abandoned. What’s most important for a Pertemps Qualifier however is the fact that connections will need to win this race if they want to go up in the Handicap enough to ensure a run in the Final at Cheltenham come March.
14:05 Aintree Tips
Becher Handicap Chase (Premier Handicap) – 3m2f
Gesskille 1pt Win @ 11/2
There’s no doubt that Gesskille ran an extremely eye-catching race on his debut over the Grand National fences in the Grand Sefton last month, and the step up in trip here should provide perfect conditions for him to get his head in front this time.
This 6yo has such an intriguing profile, owing to the fact that he’s spent the majority of his career in France. This 3 times winner for Francois Nicolle was sold to Oliver Greenall last year, and he made his UK debut in March when winning a 3m Hunters Chase at Ludlow – before he then backed that win up under a penalty at Kempton in April with a very easy success.
Connections kept Gesskille going over the Spring/early part of the Summer by utilising the French jumps porgramme at Auteuil – and he ran two nice races; firstly finishing 2nd in a 2m6f Chase in May, before then winning a Listed Chase over the same course & distance in mid-June. The form of that race is working out well too, as the 2nd has since won a Listed Handicap Hurdle.
Gesskille’s run in the Grand Serfton last month was a brilliant one however, as off a mark of 133 he jumped for fun over these unique obstacles, and in the end he was only denied a nose by Al Dancer (149) – who had first run on the Oliver Greenall Horse, and only just clung on to victory.
Considering the way Gesskille finished off his race at Aintree you have to imagine that stepping back up in trip to 3m2f will suit him massively here, and I think a 4lbs rise is more than lenient considering the pair pulled 8 lengths clear of the 3rd. The 4th Lifetime Ambition (155) has also boosted the form since by finishing 2nd in the Troytown at Navan last weekend.
15:15 Aintree Tips
Handicap Hurdle (Class 2) – 2m4f
Sizing Pottsie 0.5pts Each/Way @ 10/1
This is a very interesting Handicap Hurdle, and I’m going to take a chance on David Pipe’s recruit Sizing Pottsie being very nicely Handicapped off a mark of just 133.
Walking On Air is clearly an interesting running considering how lightly raced he is, and Langer Dan has shown he is more than capable in Handicap Hurdles – but the Henderson runner has plenty to prove following a pulled up effort over this track and trip in April, and the Skelton Horse is up 7lbs for his victory here at the same meeting.
Sizing Pottsie however could be extremely well treated, and he’s still fairly unexposed over this 2m4f trip. This 8yo is well known for being an admirable performer for Jessie Harrington in Ireland – where he reached a peak rating of 157 over fences, with victories up to Grade 2 level as recently as March, where he won the Webster Cup at Navan.
One thing Sizing Pottsie hasn’t done many times in his career however is run over 2m4f, but on his latest attempt in Ireland he was only 6 lengths 2nd behind Melon (160) in the Red Mills Chase at Gowran in February, so based on that effort he’s still got plenty to offer over this distance.
Since joining David Pipe in the Summer, Sizing Pottsie has ran in 2 Novice Hurdles – bolting up over 2m at Ayr in October, before 14 days ago finishing 2nd behind the exciting prospect Tahmuras (134) in a Listed Novice Hurdle at Haydock. The Handicapper has been extremely lenient following that effort however, as he was rated 143 going into the contest, and he’s now been dropped 10lbs to a mark of 133 – which I think is extremely generous considering the form doesn’t look half bad. With Fergus Gillard jumping aboard to take off a further 3lbs, I think Sizing Pottsie has a great chance here.
15:30 Sandown Tips
London National Handicap Chase (Class 2) – 3m5f
Almazhar Garde 0.5pts Each/Way @ 20/1
Whilst I do have a lot of respect for Revels Hill here, I do think he short enough in the betting considering it’s an 11 runner regional National over 3m5f – and instead I’m going to take a flyer on one at a massive price.
Charlie Longsdon is another trainer in form with 4 winners from his last 20 runners (20% strike rate), and I think his Almazhar Garde is more than capable of out-running his odds of 20/1 here. This Horse is still only a 7yo, and last season he enjoyed a productive campaign over fences – albeit failing to get his head in front.
Last November Almazhar finished 2nd in the Southern National at Fontwell off a mark of 138, but it was his runs at Catterick in January/February which read extremely well – as he was 2nd in the 3m6f Yorkshire Grand National when only beaten 0.75 lengths by Supreme Escape having been caught very late on, and then returning to that track a month later he was again 2nd off a mark of 139 when behind the progressive Omar Maretti (137).
Charlie Longsdon started this Horse with a pipe-opener at Cheltenham in October when he was only headed at the 3rd last, and having had that run under his belt he was sent off 13/2 for a return effort in the Southern National off 135 – but unfortunately, he took a fall at the 10th flight when travelling prominently.
Having not really had a race that day at Fontwell then he should clearly be in peak condition for a crack at the London National, and whilst this is a better race, his rating of 135 is the lowest he’s raced off since winning off 133 at Kelso in April 2021. This 3m5f trip will clearly suit considering his performance in the Yorkshire National earlier in the year, and the quicker ground should also suit him.