Full race preview and free betting tips for the 2.05pm Maghull Novices’ Chase at Aintree.
Another competitive novice field lines up on Saturday in the Maghull Novice’ Chase. With three of the seven runners deciding to bypass the Cheltenham Festival, it remains to be seen whether that will prove to be influential.
The Alan King trained BALDER SUCCES (7/2 BetVictor) has been aimed at this meeting ever since they decided to bypass the Cheltenham Festival. He was disappointing when finishing fifth behind Hinterland in December, but after that bad run, it emerged that the King yard had a virus which resulted in a closure of the yard for a short while. That performance can be forgiven, and I think that coming here fresh will be a huge advantage. Ideally he could do with a bit of rain to help his chances, but I think his jumping alone could win the race, and for me is the one to beat.
The Paul Nicholls trained Hinterland (3/1 SkyBet) will be looking to put his disappointing Cheltenham Festival behind him. The horse unseated jockey Noel Fehily in the Champion Chase when he was badly hampered early on. Until that defeat, he was unbeaten this season, winning two in two, with some talented horses behind him. His form is solid, but his jumping can be quite dodgy at times. He has the potential to do well in the race, but things need to go his way.
Another interesting runner in the race is Moscow Mannon (20/1 Ladbrokes) for Henry De Bromhead. This eight year-old has a compelling profile and is relatively unexposed. He made a decent start to his jumping career last season, winning a novice hurdle at Navan before running well behind the likes of Annie Power and Un De Sceaux at the Punchestown Festival. He won three bumpers for Downpatrick based trainer Brian Hamilton a couple of seasons ago and finished fourth behind Champagne Fever in the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival. On that form he looks pretty impressive and for a horse on the up, he’s definitely worth keeping an eye on.
Next Sensation (4/1 SkyBet) had a hard race at Cheltenham when fourth in the Grand Annual. Considering he did go out in front quite hard setting a fierce pace he kept on gamely in the final stages of the race. This looks a step up in class for the horse, who may find it hard to stay with the field. That said, he has some solid form ahead of a horse of Tom George’s, God’s Own, who only lost to Balder Succes by a couple of lengths last time out.
Trifolium (3/1 BetVictor) is another horse who had a hard race at the Cheltenham Festival, and I worry that this race may have come around too soon. Given the fact that he has had to travel back and forth from Ireland, along with the tough race he faced in the Arkle, this might be a bit too much for the seven year-old. Coming into Cheltenham he was hotly tipped and fancied, but things didn’t quite come off. His form probably doesn’t look as good now as it did before the Festival, but the booking of AP McCoy is bound to help his services.
Another to come into this race straight from the Arkle is Ted Veale (16/1 Ladbrokes), who never travelled in the race before falling two out. He is an inconsistent type and is probably best watched in this race. He does have a Cheltenham Festival win under his belt, from last season, but has shown little since.
Simply Ned (12/1 SkyBet), like Next Sensation, looks to be stepping up in class coming into this race. This Nicky Richards trained seven year-old has shown consistency throughout the season, but the step up against horses of the calibre in this race, may be too much.
I am a huge BALDER SUCCES fan. He is one of the best jumpers around, and is definitely the best jumper in this field. My heart wants him to win, and luckily my head thinks he will too. The fact that he didn’t go to Cheltenham is a huge plus as he comes here fresh. His trainer Alan King’s horses look to be in good form, and if he shows his best form on the day, I think he’ll be hard to beat.
BALDER SUCCES (WIN) (7/2 BetVictor)
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