Planet Of Sound - Kempton Park Chase Tips

Clear Vision of a Kempton winner

The action is not too bad for a Monday with a couple of decent jumps fixtures at Ludlow and Kempton. I have a selection from each with two chases under the microscope. Union Jack D’Ycy was an 11-8 (advised) winner on Sunday.

Ludlow 2.20: Sir Valentino

He has spoiled his chances on a number of occasions over fences with some sloppy leaps, but Sir Valentino is given another chance to make amends at Ludlow this afternoon, the venue of his one error free round of jumping so far.

Trainer Tom George wasted no time in sending him over fences after just two runs over hurdles last season, so clearly he has seen plenty enough at home to think he can make into a useful chaser. However he fell on debut at Catterick and then when holding every chance two out at Newbury last season. In between times he was a fair second over course and distance here in January on heavy ground, having been hampered on the run-in.

He did finish the season with a confidence boosting win in a minor maiden hurdle at Southwell, handling the faster going on that occasion. He travelled well throughout at Chepstow on his return back over fences, and was just coming through to challenge when ploughing through the fourth last. There was no way back from there, but Ludlow is one of the easier jumping tracks and he looks on a fair mark if he can cut out those errors. It looks interesting that Paddy Brennan comes here rather than ride his stable’s entry at Kempton today.

Kempton 2.45: Vision des Champs

A decent horse in his native France, Vision Des Champs showed little for Gary Moore in five runs that came in quick succession during the spring, but off the back of a better effort at this track on his return there could be more to come from the 5yo today off his low weight.

Whilst he did win a hurdle and chase in France, hindsight might show that his initial rating in Britain of 128 was a trifle harsh. However his last win in France came on soft ground and his five runs down the field in Britain all came on quickish conditions, so it is entirely possible we were simply seeing a horse running out of his comfort zone in the spring.

That might also explain why he ran so much better in second behind Comeonginger over course and distance at the beginning of the month. He kept on nicely there despite pulling fiercely early on, something he was inclined to do last season as well. Hopefully that freshness will be somewhat less noticeable today after that run out and heavy rain over the weekend could have turned the ground in his favour. There is also plenty of pace in this race which could help him to settle better as well. He has already dropped 20lbs since coming over to Gary Moore so looks far better handicapped now.

Recommended bets:

Ludlow 2.20: Sir Valentino – 7/2 Boylesports, BetVictor, Paddy Power

Kempton 2.45: Vision Des Champs (each-way) – 14-1 Bet365

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 Clear Vision of a Kempton winner

Venetia Williams

Heavy ground means follow Venetia

With both British fixtures today to be staged on stiff tracks and on heavy going, there will be a massive emphasis on stamina and that means Venetia Williams trained horses will be in their element. Both my selections fall into that category in their respective chases. A solid day yesterday brought wins for Al Ferof (advised 3-1) and Silviniaco Conti (advised 7-2).

Exeter 2.05: Jupiter Rex

Few horses demonstrate the skills of Venetia Williams better than Jupiter Rex who managed the remarkable feat of winning seven handicaps in succession during the 2012/3 season, of which five of them he was sent off odds-on, proving her placing of the horse spot on. A setback caused him to miss the whole of last season, but there was encouragement enough about his reappearance here recently to suggest he can regain the winning thread here today.

There are a few rivals in this field who could struggle to cope with conditions – either due to doubts over the going or the 3m trip. That does not apply to Jupiter Rex who has already won over 3m3f and has three wins on heavy ground.

Still only rated 110, he won off 5lbs lower when last winning at Newton Abbot on Easter Monday 2013 and aged seven, there should be a little more to come despite that layoff. Weak in the market for his return over hurdles eleven days ago, he was still in contention three out before giving way, but I suspect it will be chasing where his future lies and he will be a fitter horse today.

Towcester 2.15: Union Jack D’Ycy

As usual when the ground is heavy and the race distance a long one, it is worthwhile checking the credentials of a Venetia Williams trained horse and in Union Jack D’ycy she has a gelding who looks made for this stamina test. In particular a switch to a right-handed track can bring about some improvement.

This French import won a couple of heavy ground contests at Auteuil as a youngster, and spent a year off the track before racing for his new trainer last season. After struggling for pace around Ludlow’s sharp track on fast ground, he produced a much better effort when gamely winning over 3m1f at Warwick on soft ground, despite showing a first tendency to jump out to his right.

That trait became more marked during the season meaning he was unable to follow up that first win off higher marks. However he was kept exclusively to left-handed tracks and I do think he will be more comfortable jumping this way round. Nevertheless his comeback run at Uttoxeter last week was promising, making a challenge on the heavy going turning for home before tiring. Entitled to come on for that, this race looks short of genuine challengers, especially with the defection of Winds and Waves this morning. He also returns to a mark today just 1lb higher than for that Warwick win.

Recommended bets:

Exeter 2.05: Jupiter Rex – 15/8 Stan James

Towcester 2.15: Union Jack D’ycy – 11-8 Totesport, Betfred

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 Heavy ground means follow Venetia

Mouse Morris

Rogue a Troytown Angel

My judgment has gone to the dogs in the past fortnight but when we lose are the times we must learn what we are doing wrong. Interestingly two notebook horses of mine, Grandads Horse and Croco Bay, both hacked up over the past two days without a shilling of my money. That tells me the ability is in me though , I just have to work harder and become smarter.

After spending a good two hours studying the Troytown, I am both dismayed and pleased to find that I have come up with the same two selections as the great Tom Segal in the Racing Post. Dismayed by the fact it will appear that I am copying him and pleased by the fact that I must be doing something right in coming up with the same two picks in a 30 runner contest.

Rogue Angel, the representative of Mouse Morris is my main fancy. A steady improver last season, he has solid form on both very soft and much quicker conditions. His 11 length win on very testing conditions at Punchestown over Touch The Eden tells me he has the stamina to win a Troytown and his strong travelling effort for a long way in the Terry Biddlecombe National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham indicates to me he has the ability to win a Troytown. A solid reappearance effort at Galway augers well and I expect a massive effort.

Owega Star is not as solid as Rogue Angel but I do fear him as he possesses a touch of class, A high-class handicapper over the smaller obstacles, he started out promisingly over fences running placed to the likes of Rebel Fitz. Although not guaranteed to stay 3 Miles at Proudstown Park, stable whispers indicate there are no stamina doubts and two quiet recent pipe openers on both the flat and over hurdles suggest everything is geared for today. Still only seven years old he is a contender.

With a safety in numbers approach at the back of my mind today, I will throw Chicago Grey into the mix, I quite fancied him at Cheltenham last week where he proceeded to run a stinker. A close examination of the form shows that while granted stamina is his forte, he cannot handle soft ground over trips greater than 2 M 4 F.(but can cope with it over 20 furlongs or less) This is what I alluded to earlier, we must learn what we did wrong with losing selections. Today I feel the ground may not be that soft at Navan ( people advised to monitor earlier race times) If times are not especially slow indicating it is not that soft , he has a squeak.

Navan is a stayers track especially in 3 Mile handicap hurdles and with that in mind, I will have two strong resolute stayers on my side in the 2.55. Hazariban gallops and gallops and has a good record at this venue. I expect him to produce a strong staying performance and go very close.


The Crafty Butcher is inconsistent but talented on his day. A repeat of his Punchestown effort behind Bob Keown would give him every chance with the same apprentice claiming a valuable five .

Heres hoping for a couple of winners and not looking foolish again at the end of the day,



Navan 2.25: 2.5 pts ew ROGUE ANGEL (12-1, Boyle Sports); 1 pt win OWEGA STAR (12-1,General) ; 0.75 pts ew CHICAGO GREY (33-1,General)

Navan 2.55: 1.5 pts ew HAZARIBAN (12-1, Bet Victor) ; 1 pt ew THE CRAFTY BUTCHER (18-1, Bet Victor)

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 Rogue a Troytown Angel


Soudain to repeat National win

Whilst most attention of punters will rightly be on Haydock and Ascot for some more jump racing from the top drawer, perhaps the best bet today might come in under the radar somewhat at Huntingdon for their feature race, the Cambridgeshire National. This looks set to go the same way as the 2013 version with the selection sent there in preference to an alternative engagement at Haydock. Aside from that contest I do have three selections from the big two fixtures.

Haydock 1.15: Heath Hunter

This is very much a card that David Pipe has targeted for winners in recent seasons and with his stable proving to be in top shape now after Cheltenham last week, the unexposed Heath Hunter can take a step forward in winning this competitive handicap hurdle.

Winner of both of his bumpers, we did not see him over hurdles until November of last year. He improved with his each of his five runs during the course of the winter, starting off with a second place at Wincanton, which proved to be good form in the long run, ahead of the likes of Sgt Reckless. Kept to two low grade novices at Sedgefield, he won both with a bit to spare, but that drop in class ensured he received a fair rating to begin his career in handicaps.

That began with a fourth place at Ascot where I thought he was asked to set too strong a pace and he did not have enough left to repel the challenge of Kaylif Aramis in the straight. He had no issues with the soft ground though, nor the 2m3f distance. His last run came here in April, but the ground was drying at the time, so although he saw the race out strongly, he just lacked the speed of Carlton Jack. However his front-running style is suited to this sharp and flat track and as we know Pipe generally has his horses fit to do their best first time out at this time of the year.

Ascot 2.05: Al Ferof

Whilst the King George is his big target this season, there is a suspicion that Al Ferof might just be a notch below the very top class chasers right now. However if there is a time to catch him it his first time out and grade 2 races are very much within his scope.

He did win this very race twelve months ago, although he did only have one opponent in French Opera to beat on the day. However his impressive win in the Paddy Power Gold Cup the previous season came after a six month break and he won his first chase on seasonal debut at Cheltenham in 2011.

Therefore whilst his form did not hit the heights last season, it could simply be that first time out is really the occasion to follow him. There was nothing wrong with his third place in the King George, form good enough to win this, but his stamina definitely seemed to empty at 3m on heavy at Newbury next time and he was only fifth in the Ryanair at the Festival. A horse with the pace in the past to win the Supreme Novices, this 2m3f trip on soft ground should be ideal.

Huntingdon 2.15: Soudain

A 15l winner of the Cambridgeshire National last season on similar ground, Soudain was hit with a 16lbs rise in the weights as a result which seemed a touch harsh. However he was impressive, finding this sharp, right-handed track ideal and jumping his rivals into submission. Having finished down the field in just two races since, the handicapper has already relented by 7lbs and the booking of stable conditional Trevor Ryan relieves his burden by a further 10lbs.

Despite being beaten 46l on his return at Carlisle, I thought he showed conspicuous promise travelling well just off the pace and coming with a decent looking challenge three out before fading up the hill. He did look as if he would come on for the race and was priced on the day as if that race was merely being used as a prep.

He had won the Lincolnshire National in 2012 at Market Rasen, a not dissimilar track to Huntingdon and whilst he lacks the class for the big money Nationals, an extreme distance is clearly right up his street. Whilst Ryan has never ridden a winner under rules, Steve Gollings has used inexperienced jockeys to his benefit before in Paul Bohan and that 10lb claim could come in very useful in such testing conditions.

Haydock 3.00: Silviniaco Conti

The winner of the Betfair Chase in 2012 when making most of the running, Silviniaco Conti had to give best to both Cue Card and Dynaste here last year when making his seasonal debut. He got his revenge in no uncertain style in the King George at Kempton the following month and can make use of the prep race he was given this autumn by trainer Paul Nicholls.

This race was always going to be his first main target, so given he looked a little rusty last season here, the Charlie Hall at Wetherby looked a good race to start him off. In truth he should have been good enough to win there even short of full fitness, but after jumping well as usual, he was a little disappointing in fading to fifth. However there is increasing evidence to suggest he needs a real test of stamina these days and the going was quick enough for him on that occasion.

He has also looked in recent races as if some form of headgear would help – even when winning the Grade 1 at Aintree in the spring, he was idling in front, so a first time pair of cheekpieces here should sharpen him up. Half an inch of racing after yesterday’s card will help him far more than the speed horses Cue Card and Dynaste and we should see the real Silviniaco Conti today.

Recommended bets:

Haydock 1.15: Heath Hunter – 5-1 general

Ascot 2.05: Al Ferof – 3/1 general

Huntingdon 2.15: Soudain – 3-1 general

Haydock 3.00: Silviniaco Conti – 7-2 general

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 Soudain to repeat National win


Pipe set for Haydock gains-Saturday Super Yankee

Apologies for no write-up today, have travel commitments.


The following five could be worth investing in a super yankee combined with an each way accume.

Haydock 1.15: Heath Hunter

Haydock 3.00: Dynaste

Haydock 3.35: Midnight Appeal

Gowran 2.10: Sli Na Fiarana

Ascot 3.15: Brick Red

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 Pipe set for Haydock gains Saturday Super Yankee