Exclusive Aintree day two preview from Tom Scudamore
Banbridge got Tom's day one preview off to a flyer after winning the opener. And later in the card Douglas Talking came agonisingly close to winning the Red Rum Handicap Chase after a brilliant front-running ride from Stephen Mulqueen, only to be touched off in the dying stages by Dancing On My Own for trainer Henry De Bromhead.
13:45 Novices' Chase
Not an original selection, but I do think GERRI COLOMBE is the one to beat here. I thought he was unlucky not to win at Cheltenham when just held off by The Real Whacker, but I do think he’ll make amends here. I do respect Complete Unknown as he looks a very progressive horse, and Paul always targets this meeting, so it wouldn’t surprise me if he ran a big race.
14:20 Handicap Hurdle
This is a ferociously competitive handicap hurdle, and as you’d expect there’s plenty you can make a case for. It’s difficult to know what Cheltenham will have taken out of him, but I do like Sam Thomas’s horse GOOD RISK AT ALL. He ran a solid race in the Coral Cup, and I think this sharper track will play to his strengths, so provided he’s come out of that race ok, I can see him going close in this.
14:55 Novices' Hurdle
I was disappointed with Luccia at Cheltenham, but if there was a reason for that below-par effort, then you’d have to give her a chance. Having said that, INTHEPOCKET ran a cracker in the Supreme, and he looks like he could have even more improvement to come, so Henry De Bromhead’s horse is the one I’ll side with.
15:30 Marsh Chase
Another really tough race to call, and although I’d certainly respect Millers Bank, the one I’m going side with is Mouse Morris’ horse FRENCH DYNAMITE. He does have a habit of finding one or two too good, but he’s always threatened to win a big one, and I think the best of his form gives him a really solid chance.
I wouldn’t rule out Fakir D’oudairies, but even at the age of eight, I’d question whether he’s quite the horse he has been in recent years.
16:05 Topham Handicap Chase
This is so so competitive, but I really liked how AL DANCER won the Grand Sefton here back in November, and I think he could follow up in this. He really took to the fences that day, and although conditions will probably be quicker this time, the National course is usually the softest part of the track, and I think everything looks set for another big run from him.
16:40 Sefton Novices' Hurdle
I’d definitely respect Stay Away Fay, but he had a hard race at Cheltenham, and the Albert Bartlett is certainly not for the faint hearted, so for that reason I’ll side with MAXIMILIAN. He skipped to Cheltenham to come straight here, and he actually beat Stay Away Fay at Doncaster on his last run in January, so I can see him confirming that form for the Donald McCain team.
17:15 Handicap Hurdle (Conditional Jockeys' and Amateur Riders Race)
I did hear Jamie Codd say he wouldn’t bother coming over for the sake of it, so the fact he’s here to ride Go Dante looks like it’s a tip in itself for me. Having said that, the one I’ll go for is my fellow Coral ambassador Joe Tizzard’s runner JPR ONE. I was impressed with how he won at Taunton after such a long absence.
Tom Scudamore, Coral Racing Ambassador