DISCORAMA (1.50) ran a cracker at the Cheltenham festival, finishing third to The Conditional in a thriller, and should again go well on his return to Prestbury Park in the 3m 3f handicap chase.
The Irish challenger was beaten on the nod by classy Native Milan on comeback at Galway in early October and Paul Nolan’s seven-year-old is open to more improvement this season. The rain was pelting down at Cheltenham early last evening so there will be no hiding place this afternoon. Discorama slogged through the mud to finish second in the four-mile National Hunt Chase at the 2019 festival, so he looks equipped for the attritional job in hand.
West Approach briefly threatened two out before giving best to fleet-footed Frodon here last month but is fancied to make a bold bid to follow up last year’s victory. He is up 6lb but that looks within his compass.
Alan King has scooped two of the last three renewals of the Unibet Greatwood Handicap Hurdle and he relies on last year’s victor Harambe and EDWARDSTONE (3.00).
Edwardstone was a smart novice last season, winning at Wincanton and Aintree, before running Stolen Silver close in the Haydock mud. The six-year-old finished sixth, but was by no means disgraced, in a hot Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. He has plenty of scope for improvement.
Harambe edged out Gumball last year and a 6lb higher mark doesn’t rule him out completely. Tegerek has gone well on deep ground in the past and should be involved.
At Southwell, FORTULTOUS (11.40) looks overpriced at 6-1 in the opening 1m 4f handicap. It is quite a competitive affair for the grade and Fortultous posted a good second to odds-on Beat The Heat over course and distance 12 days ago. The winner came out and won again off an 8lb higher mark, so the form looks rock-solid.
ROUNDEL (12.10) didn't appear the heartiest of battlers when fading into third behind Annie De Vega here six days ago. The winner seems progressive, however, and Roundel should feel more at ease dropping into handicap company. David O'Meara fits cheek-pieces and the drop to seven furlongs seems the right way to go.
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