Musselburgh’s richest jumps race of all time takes place on the bet365-sponsored card on Saturday and it’s live on ITV3. Racing Post tipster Graeme Rodway gives his three best bets.
Paul Nicholls and Bryony Frost will be keen to win the bet365 Frodon Novices' Limited Handicap Chase (1.40), given it is named in honour of one of their warriors, and it will be a surprise if Monmiral can’t take advantage of what looks like a good opportunity.
The seven-year-old competed in Grade 1 company as a novice over fences last season and went off a well-backed 4/1 chance for the December Gold Cup at Cheltenham on his seasonal reappearance. He finished a well-held seventh, but paid for helping to force a fast early pace.
He probably did well to be beaten only 15 lengths after going off so quickly and is entitled to improve with that first run since last April under his belt. He is also down 3lb in the weights.
That gets him in nicely at the top of the handicap, in this weaker contest, and this won’t be anywhere near as competitive as the Cheltenham event. Monmiral can make all the running.
The first ever £100,000 jumps race at Musselburgh is the bet365 Edinburgh National Handicap Chase (2.15) and the one to be with is the well-handicapped Castle Robin.
The nine-year-old stayed on strongly to land the Masters at Sandown on this day last year over 3m and might have more to offer now that he is upped to 3m71/2f for the first time.
Castle Robin has run only three times since that last win, recording form figures of 4F5, but he has now dropped to a just 1lb higher than for his Sandown success and is nicely treated.
He shaped better than his finishing position of fifth suggests on his seasonal reappearance at Doncaster in December, staying up with the pace for a long way and fading only towards the finish. The omission of all the fences in the home straight probably wouldn’t have suited him.
The good to soft ground at Musselburgh should be ideal for Castle Robin and he can be expected to come on for that promising return. He should be bang there provided he does.
The bet365 Scottish County Handicap Hurdle (2.50) features a rematch between last year’s first and second, Collingham and Parisencore. It’s worth backing Parisencore for revenge.
The eight-year-old is only 3lb higher than for that good effort and he is 3lb lower than when a close seventh behind the classy Rubaud in the Scottish Champion Hurdle at Ayr last season.
Parisencore proved he retains his ability when switched to chasing this season. He was a good second on his debut over fences at Ayr and lost out by just a neck at Doncaster on his last run.
A reproduction of that effort back over hurdles would give Parisencore an outstanding chance and an impressive strike rate of three wins from 12 starts at this discipline give hope that the return to hurdling won’t be an issue. A big run is likely for regular rider Danny McMenamin.
This article was written by a partner sports writer via Spotlight Sports Group. All odds displayed on this page were correct at the time of writing and are subject to withdrawal or change at any time.