Alan Thomson landed his nap yesterday and is rowing in with Silvestre De Sousa at today's Newcastle racing action.
COLIN TIZZARD'S focus will be very much fixed on the upcoming Cheltenham festival but, meanwhile, he has plotted a successful winter flat campaign for PADLEYOUROWNCANOE (3.40).
His gelding heads for Newcastle on the back of victories at Lingfield and Southwell, with the booking of Silvestre De Sousa an obvious bonus in the two-miler. The handicapper has raised Padleyourowncanoe 9lb and this will be his first experience of the Tapeta surface, at least in public. This contest represents a rise in class but the six-year-old is a winner over three miles over fences so should come into his own on this galloping circuit.
De Sousa has a good book of rides and it may be worthwhile mixing his mounts in doubles and trebles – Papa Power (2.30), Paddyplex (3.05) and Geizy Teizy (4.15).
Olly Murphy and Richard Johnson should be among the winners at Musselburgh in the shape of MADE FOR YOU (1.30) and DUBAI GUEST (3.52).
The six-race card is extremely modest and Made For You can build on his sixth at Warwick which came on the back of a 213-day absence following a wind procedure.
Dubai Guest was not unfancied on racecourse debut, also at Warwick, 19 days ago and showed some promise in mid-pack. It looked quite a hot bumper and Dubai Guest should have learned from that experience.
Tim Vaughan is another southern trainer who likes to target Musselburgh and JUDEX LEFOU (1.00) has been found a very weak maiden hurdle. The five-year-old had some placed form in Ireland so his UK debut at Catterick must have disappointed connections as he folded quite tamely after racing prominently. Judex Lefou is surely capable of better.
Vaughan saddles another fancied runner in Iona Lad in the 2m 4f handicap hurdle but his second to a long odds-on favourite at Newton Abbot (good to firm) last July probably didn’t amount to much. OVERCOURT (2.42) is less exposed and Sandy Thomson’s gelding has his first start in a handicap following a third behind favourite Cheddleton and Jabbaar at Kelso in January. Paper Roses wasn’t disgraced when finishing sixth at Newcastle and Donald Whillans’ mare rates a danger. Methodtothemadness made all to score at Carlisle and will wear a tongue-tie after two lacklustre subsequent efforts.