Nice to get off the mark on the turf with a couple of winners at Leicester on Friday. Zulu Zander had the benefit of experience and built on his promising debut third in the Brocklesby at Doncaster and then later Eddystone Rock stayed on in good style to win the mile and a half handicap.
I’ve six rides on Saturday but rest assured we’ll all be keeping a close eye on the events at Aintree. Tiger Roll is a lovely horse, jumps well and is from a stable going really well. I wish my fellow brand ambassador Davy Russell all the very best of luck.
CHICA DE LA NOCHE (2.00pm)
She’s been busy on the all-weather this year and I was aboard when she just got home to win at Kempton two starts ago. She was a close-up fifth at Chelmsford last time out when the six furlongs might have been on the sharp side but back at seven she will hopefully run her race in what looks a competitive opener.
Back on the flat after a spell over hurdles. He gave me a winner at Kempton last year over 1m 2f and should relish this longer trip. Sotomayor could be a danger after his course and distance win for which he’s now up 3lb in the weights.
MYTHICAL MADNESS (3.45pm)
El Ghazwani won very well over course and distance last week and is clearly the one we all have to beat here. My fella just seems to have been struggling with his handicap mark but is dropped another couple pounds which will hopefully allow him to be a little more competitive.
Small field of five but it looks quite competitive. I’ve only ridden him once before – that was at Lingfield when he ran a good race in second. I think the trip is fine and he’s down a pound in the handicap but he’s up against some in form rivals including Flaming Marvel from the James Fanshawe stable.
Interesting to see if Kupa River runs again so quickly. I was fifth to him at Leicester on Friday and he’ll have a 6lb penalty if turning out again 24 hours later. Followthesteps is hopefully capable of finding further improvement and ran a good race for me when fourth at Wolverhampton last time out. The key, I guess, will be whether the first time cheekpieces bring about an improvement.
GLORIOUS EMARATY (8.30pm)
Looks on paper, at least, my best chance of a winner on the day. He ran a big race for Clive (Cox) at Chantilly last time out and was unlucky not to win and before that also had no luck in the run when second for me at Wolverhampton. There’s no doubting he has ability. Just needs a slice of luck now.
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