This tip has expired. Please check our free horse racing tips section of the website to find the most up to date.
It's been a horrendous last four weeks on this thread for me, I've struggled for winners and consistency so to get some winners on Monday was nice to have a nice confidence booster that I am still doing the right things.
Exeter 2:30 – Neigh Botha 6/1 (1pt Bet365)
The way that the Oliver Greenall & Josh Guerriero team have kicked off this jump season has been very impressive and especially with their chasers. Neigh Botha made a decent enough chase debut at Sedgefield last time out 13 days ago, and I thought his jumping got better as he went along and it looked like a performance which could bring out further improvement.
I don't think this race is too strong and it should pay dividends going for one of the unexposed horses, there are a few to pick from but I believe the run of Neigh Botha was the run which left the best impression. He made 1 or 2 errors at Sedgefield, but nothing too shuddering and for the most part he looked like a natural, especially the last fence when he was running at some speed, he managed to jump it very well. They've decided to drop him back in trip by a furlong, though he should stay further in time I think the drop in trip won't hinder him as Exeter will probably turn to soft ground as it will be draining on the stamina so knowing that he has excess stamina is a definite positive.
The trainers' form reads very well with a 44% SR in the last 14 days, which has resulted in 7 wins.
Exeter 3:00 – Snipe 4/1 (1pt Bet365)
I'm not the biggest fan of Harry Skelton, so backing Snipe might be a surprise. I think he is a good jockey but he often overcomplicates his rides and I like to compare him to the jumps jockey Jamie Spencer where he holds horses up from well off the pace, let them travel into the race on the bridle and then instead of going for home he tries to pop them over the final fence and more often than not he clatters it and doesn't end up winning.
Despite my issues with Harry, I think Snipe has a nice chance of winning his 2nd chase on just his 2nd start. Harry did hold this horse up last time out, shock. But, he held him up from well off the pace and gave the horse a nice introduction to fences, where the horse jumped well apart from one when he went through the fence, but it clearly didn't check his momentum as he went on to win and win nicely. I think Harry knew that he was well ahead of his handicap mark as he had him miles off the pace, he got a bit serious when turning for home to get him to bridge the gap but when he did that there was only going to be one winner.
Ideally, I wouldn't want Harry to hold Snipe up like he did last time out, as chances are that he'll have no chance if the winner is in the front group, as this is a tougher race than what he competed in last time out. However, if given a nice position I think this is a nice opportunity to win another race over fences, he has the fitness edge on most of these, he jumps well and seems to like the soft ground.
Lounge Lizard would've been a threat but he was poor on his last run 158 days ago, this is his first run of the season so he might need it. Copperhead was my likely main threat to Snipe as he is on a very low handicap mark to what he was a couple of years ago, and he's been running well, but I get the impression he isn't one to trust anymore, even after that return to from last time out, I feel like he could easily bomb out this time.
Exeter 4:00 – Goshhowposh 6/1 (1pt Bet365)
My selection, Goshhowposh will have to prove his fitness on his seasonal reappearance on the back of a 297 day break, but I do believe he has more to offer now he heads into handicaps for the first time.
This horse has always looked like a stayer and trips like 2m 7f and maybe slightly further would bring the best out of him. How he finished 2nd on his hurdles debut I'll never know as he came from the clouds to finish with a rattle against a horse who has since been rated in the 130s. He has been very hit-and-miss since and has finished 4th and 3rd in his other two starts to date, his jumping has often let him down, but his stamina looks to be his strongest attribute as when he looked beaten at Uttoxeter last time out he did plug on strongly and if he had an extra furlong or so he probably would've found enough to win.
Many in this race have questions about if they're too high in the handicap, will handle the ground and whether the trip will suit. My only concern with my horse is the time away from the track, but if he is fit and ready I think he could easily win this race, as I don't really rate the opposition all too much.
Hereford 2:40 – Francina 10/3 (1pt)
A couple of the juveniles in this race have experience over hurdles already, but I wouldn't say they look like potential world beaters so I think the outsider of the bunch, Francina can be the play in this race.
I stuck up Summer Night City on hurdles debut for the Ben Brookhouse team and he was smashed in the betting for his debut, but was shocking, either he desperately needed the run or he isn't that good at this moment in time, and I think it's the latter. It looked like he had never seen a hurdle in his life and he was terrible, if he goes on to win this race then fairplay but for me, he has to be the outsider of the field, so it's surprising that he isn't.
Francina is a well-bred filly for the staying trips on the flat and as a jumps horse. She is related to three winners over hurdles, every horse from her mum that has gone over hurdles has won and she has produced a couple of decent horses. This horse is related to Fun Mac who was a very good horse for Hughie Morrison on the flat, so there's no doubt in my mind that she will be fine at this trip. Jamie Snowden is a great trainer and he places his horses very well, this horse gets 7lb from the others apart from Great Valley who has a 5lb claimer on board, so given her pedigree and the weight advantage, I can't see how she should be the outsider.
Exeter - 2:30 pm
6/1 @ Bet365
Exeter - 3:00 pm
4/1 @ Bet365
Exeter - 4:00 pm
6/1 @ Bet365
Hereford - 2:40 pm