Thursday January 20

Warwick got the go-ahead to stage today’s meeting, but Doncaster and Huntingdon both need morning inspections tomorrow, so fingers and toes are firmly crossed as a warmer weather forecast creeps ever closer.

Full marks for Taunton salvaging last week’s abandoned fixture, and the plan is to run The Unit there. “He is on a hat-trick and is now starting to race properly since he learned to settle, and we know he likes the track, so, hopefully, he’ll clock up another victory,” said Alan, who provisionally also declared Laser Light in the hope that the race might divide. “He looked not to stay three miles last time, so it makes sense to drop down in trip,” he added.

In anticipation that the other two meetings did get the go-ahead, Alan said:”Midnight Cowboy won at Doncaster six weeks ago over two and a half miles, but we think going up to three in the opener there might bring about further improvement and he’ll appreciate the good ground, as will Kerrow in the three-mile novice chase. He is in super form just now.

“We have both Midnight Maestro and Sir Anthony Browne in the two-mile novice hurdle at Huntingdon. Midnight Maestro won well at Warwick in what may not have been the strongest of races and he then disappointed us at Cheltenham, so we are back to the drawing board with him.

Sir Anthony Browne, who was due to run last week but had spots on his neck, was a smart bumper horse and potentially one of our most exciting novice hurdle prospects, so it was a blow when he had to have a tie-back operation. Horses are rarely as good again when you’ve had to tinker with their wind, so we can just hope and pray and it will be interesting to see how he shapes.

Awesome Rosie runs in the two and a half mile handicap hurdle. He bumped into a decent horse at Doncaster – one who has won again since – and is in grand form at home, while Winner Massagot, whose target is the Beginners Chase, also ran much better at Doncaster, showing that he is finding his form again and he worked really well last Saturday.

“Finally, Deyrann de Carjac makes his debut in the bumper. He is one of our sharpest and that is why we are aiming at this mile and six (furlongs) race, and we like him a lot and he is ready to start.”