Thursday January 28
Several of our big guns are scheduled to reappear at Cheltenham on Saturday, but we have a busy Friday planned before we get to Prestbury Park, with runners at Doncaster, Huntingdon and Lingfield.
Alan said:”First up is The Mumper in the novices handicap chase at Doncaster. He was travelling ok when he fell three out at Fontwell, and I would like to think that run will have brought him on.
“Next comes Give Him A Glance in the novice hurdle. He was a bit keen first time up over jumps at Towcester and needs to settle better, but I would hope that he will improve with experience.
“The ground is the key to The Tourard Man, and the more it improves on Town Moor the better his chance would be in the novices chase. He has been in good form at home.
“Big Chief Benny, who runs in the maiden hurdle, is another who would benefit from better ground. He did not travel as well at Newbury last time as he had done there previously, but it was his third run in a relatively short space of time and he did chase home a useful horse in Charmix. He has had a nice break and is a likeable novice who is another who will appreciate this less testing ground.”
“Handsome Sam was in at Doncaster but runs instead in the handicap hurdle at Huntingdon. He won on his debut for me at Leicester and then went back there and finished fourth in what was a stronger race. I don’t think he really handled the softer ground, but he is another young horse we like and if conditions continue to improve I hope he will run well.
“Zipple Back, the first horse I have trained for Jared Sullivan, makes his debut in the bumper there. Noel Fehily came and rode him work last Saturday and he was pleased with the feel that he got. I like this horse and he is ready to start.
“Finally, we have Celestra making her debut in the three-year-old maiden at Lingfield. She is a Doyen filly owned by The Barbury Castle Stud, and it will be good to get her rolling, too.”