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Dollerina was placed over at Deauville back in third. Grande Des Champs was given a strange ride which would suggest it wasn't all about today. The horse jumped fine on chase debut, was up with the pace then Derek let him go through the field towards the rear and didn't move a muscle on the horse, the horse then stayed very strongly on the bridle. It's a ride which needed looking into, as it gave no run for the punter's money and could've easily been pitching for the win if he tried. Fransham was shocking, had everything in his favour to return to form today and he didn't get near.
Carlisle 1:50 – Western Zephyr 10/1 (0.5pt EW PaddyPower 3pl)
The race could be over before it starts for Western Zephyr, it all depends on how he is in the preliminaries and on his way down to the start as he can often blow over, but if he behaves himself then I'm sure he has a big part to play on chase debut.
He was kept to novice races for the entire of last season apart from two runs in Class 1 company and in those novice races he was 3/4 with the only defeat at that level coming to Pembroke who was the talking horse of Dan Skelton's novice charge last year, so it's nothing to be ashamed of. He did struggle in Class 1 company, but it was a big jump up in class and I believe that he will make a better chase than a hurdler so it's great to see him get his head in front on three occasions over hurdles. He has plenty of scope and jumps his hurdles with plenty of air so fences were more than likely always going to be his game, as his PTP success would enhance those claims as he was a 25L win on his sole PTP run.
There are some decent horses in this race but I think you can take them on. Benson makes his belated chase debut at the age of 8 and he is running off a tough mark. Fringill Dike is 3/3 over fences so far but the form doesn't convince me to be the strongest. Nells Son is back over fences after two runs last year, but his technique wasn't convincing that he is an out-and-out chaser, with him looking sticky over the fences. Snake Roll is a player on chase debut, but I think he might be better over further and if it becomes a match I think Western Zephyr will have too much speed for him.
Carlisle 3:35 – Wasdell Dundalk 15/2 (0.5pt EW PaddyPower 4pl)
Wasdell Dundalk clearly has a liking to Perth and has racked up three wins in fairly quick succession over this summer for his new trainer, Lisa Harrison, so it does raise questions now he is racing outside of Perth, but with the form he is in I think you can take a chance on him landing the four-timer.
I have tipped this horse up and been on the receiving end of tipping against him and I thought he has been brilliant this summer on all types of ground. He won very nicely last time out, this race is deeper but he won with ease yet again last time out and the runner-up has franked the form. Cyclop was second to Wasdell Dundalk and he went on to finish 3rd at Chepstow behind my selection, Good Boy Bobby, which I think is a good piece of form, yet he was 14L behind my selection at Perth.
My selection is one of two horses who have had a recent run so fitness will be on his side, he'll like whatever the ground is (should turn soft with the expected rain) and he is in great form at present. His jumping has been immaculate since transitioning to Lisa Harrison's yard and I think they'll be fancying their chances for this race today.
Wincanton 3:10 – Juniper 11/4 (1pt)
It looked like Juniper was going to get the better of My Silver Lining at Cheltenham in April but the latter just managed to outstay Juniper in the final 50 yards to grab the win, I think back on a flatter track the form can be reversed.
This mare has won when fresh before and the majority of her best performances have come on the back of a break so the 182-day absence doesn't concern me. She has moved to Anthony Honeyball's yard as Harry Whittington has decided to pack it in as a trainer. I see that being a positive, which isn't a dig at Harry as he was a very capable trainer, Anthony is just a great trainer and is very good at picking races out.
Though this mare is now a 9yo and is running off a career-high mark of 115 I think there is more to come as she is still very lightly raced with just 8 career starts over fences, with the run lto being the joint best of them all. She is an incredibly sound jumper and seems to handle any surface. There are some well-handicapped horses in this race, but I think with the swap to Anthony's yard is likely to bring out further improvement, especially with his yard being in great form, she is the pick in this race.
Carlisle - 1:50 pm
10/1 @ PaddyPower
Carlisle - 3:35 pm
15/2 @ PaddyPower
Wincanton - 3:10 pm