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Apologies for Sunday's sole selection as Theatre Glory stunk the place out. I'm not having that she didn't stay as she was the first horse beaten, so I'd say she wasn't quite herself. Obviously, with James Bowen on Marie's Rock that was the easy option to pick out, but even after that race I'd be very wary of backing her over 3m against the boys, even in a weak stayer's division as she still hasn't learnt to settle at the age of 9.
Hereford 2:30 – Wasthatok 9/2 (1pt)
It will be interesting to see who goes forward in this race as four or five like to race from the front or have done in the past, so on paper it could turn into a strongly run 2m race. Guy would be a beneficiary of a strong pace, but he is a horse who doesn't win too often and despite his falling handicap mark I'd be thinking a newcomer to fences could beat him.
The newcomer I liked is the Kerry Lee runner, Wasthatok. It's not a great sign that Gavin Cromwell decided to move this horse on and for only 16k, but from what I've seen from him I think he is made for fences. This 6yo is a big strapping horse who has the frame for jumping fences, so I think he makes a good amount of appeal on chase and stable debut for Kerry Lee. He has to shoulder 12st on his first run from 163 days off the track, but he has the physical ability to carry a big weight.
He is a good horse on the flat, producing a RPR best of 83 and he translated that to three decent runs over hurdles, and the last time we saw him he was at Market Rasen when finishing 2nd/10 after travelling powerfully through a relatively weak race, but the winner has gone on to finish in the places three times since, including a decent second to the highly regarded Shanagh Bob.
To add to his big frame, Wasthatok has chasers in the pedigree including his mum who won twice over fences, and his grandmother won a dual winner over fences, so there's plenty of scope and optimism for today's race as long as he's fit and ready to fire.
Hereford 3:00 – Playtogetaway 3/1 (1pt)
When Jonjo Sr gets a horse on a winning streak off the lower end of the handicap marks I think they are worth following, so it's a bet in this race for me with his 6yo Playtogetaway.
This horse also has to prove his fitness as he hasn't been seen for 240 days, but if he is fit then I think he is a major player in this Class 3 contest and I do believe he is still ahead of the handicapper off his current rating of 114. He has won his first two races in handicaps, and that's not a surprise given that the trainer is known for getting horses in handicaps off low marks. He hasn't won by big margins in both of his wins, but I think he had plenty left under the bonnet and it was just a matter of keeping the distances small, as I do think Jonjo Jr could've easily gone for home much sooner and this horse would have been 10lbs heavier than what he is, easily.
He is a strong traveller through his races and the decent racing ground at Hereford will be right up his street as he clearly doesn't like it too testing as connections took him out of a race just after Christmas where the going was soft, so based on that you'd like to think he'll be fit enough to do himself justice as he's had two training camps, one for the original entry and the second one for now.
Hereford - 2:30 pm
9/2 @ Bet365
Hereford - 3:00 pm