Saphir Du Rheu is all class

November 28th, 2015 | Ian Carnaby's Racing News

Baradari was a splendid winner at 12/1 for us last week. He was clearly on excellent terms with himself and continued Dan Skelton’s excellent run. Dan will soon be in the top flight of trainers and, like Harry Fry, repeatedly shows the benefit of having worked under Paul Nicholls.

When I totally agree with ante-post prices I tend to keep my money in my pocket because the chances are that any value has disappeared. That is certainly the case with the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury on Saturday, where it is palpably obvious that Saphir Du Rheu is a class act in a far from vintage field and previous winner Bobs Worth is very fairly treated with 11st 2lb if right back to his best. I’d be wary of assuming that to be the case just because he kept on well over hurdles last time. Yes, it will have sharpened him up but there have been quite a few disappointing efforts since he won the Newbury feature three years ago. I don’t really like anything towards the foot of the handicap but I can envisage The Young Master giving a good account of himself in the hands of Sam Waley-Cohen. SAPHIR DU RHEU remains the selection but the value is non-existent.

Warren Greatrex’s horses have been in form at the meeting so World Hurdle hero Cole Harden may be able to shrug off his Grade 1 penalty in the Grade 2 bet365 Long Distance Hurdle but be warned that the extra poundage tends to defeat horses at this stage of their campaign. Whistler faces a similar problem so, although I see him as a high-class handicapper more than anything else, I can see Thistlecrack, from the in-form Colin Tizzard stable, going close. Even so, no bet.

The Grade 1 “Fighting Fifth” at Newcastle is a curious affair because not many of them have pretensions to glory at this level. Unusually, Irving and Top Notch turn out again after fighting out the finish at Haydock just a week ago. I think Top Notch can turn the tables but that does not necessarily make him the winner, with Wicklow Brave and Identity Thief travelling over from Ireland. I feel strongly that Top Notch is the best horse in the race but I worry about horses turning out again so quickly. He is still my choice.

A very good way to save money is to avoid bumper horses carrying a penalty. There are exceptions, of course, as there are in almost everything, and in this case there is no doubt a jockey’s allowance can complicate the picture. Greatrex had three entered for the mares’ finale at Bangor but Harry Bannister was jocked up good and early tor THE NIPPER and she is the bet of the day to record her second course victory.