AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

DAVY RUSSELL: Sandown Saturday

[dropcap]H[/dropcap]appy New Year to all readers. I’m hoping to start 2018 in the same way I finished 2017 and ride a few winners.

I’m taking an early morning flight over for Sandown’s Saturday card where I have just the one ride in the second race.

Thoughts on that one below, plus the other big races of the day the Tolworth Hurdle, the valuable Veterans’s Chase and the Welsh National.

I’ll be back on Saturday with a new blog looking ahead to Naas on Sunday where I currently have three booked rides.




She is a good strong filly who steps up in trip again after going down by just a neck at Haydock behind Cap Soleil. She stayed on really strongly for me that day which was on heavy ground and should again like conditions underfoot. I’m hopeful that the slight step up in trip and uphill finish at Sandown will suit her but she does need to improve her jumping which hopefully will be the case here.

Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle 2.25pm

I was second to Western Ryder at Cheltenham when I was onboard Lalor. I thought I was going just as well between the last two flights but he quickened nicely after the last and I think he is a good horse. It will be tough work on this ground but he is one who we know stays and has plenty of stamina. He’d be the one for me.

Veterans’ Handicap Chase 3pm

Double the prize money on offer than the Grade 1 on the card so it’s no surprise to see a big field!! It includes last year’s 1-2-3 Pete The Feat, Theatrical Star and Loose Chips. It’s great to see these races and in many ways races like this justify keeping the older chasers in training. Gas Line Boy is sure to have plenty of support but you can never quite tell how horses will perform coming back to normal fences having won over the National fences at Aintree. As for picking a winner amongst this lot, I wouldn’t know where to start. Plenty of these look well handicapped on their best form, but its hard to tell whether the flame still burns as bright as it once did!

Welsh National Chepstow 2.05pm

Stamina sapping as always on the expected heavy ground. Conditions should suit the Irish trained Raz De Maree who finished strongly into second in this last year and he also ran in the Grand National but unseated at Bechers. Gavin Cromwell’s runner had a good spin over hurdles at Southwell the last day in preparation for this and looks to have a better chance than many.


Hi Davy,

What great rides and wins over the Christmas period, but I was sorry about Zabana. Is the Jockeys Title now a serious target for you? Do you think that Apples Jade would be a realistic contender for the Stayers Hurdle at Cheltenham if she took part?

All the best for 2018,
Kind Regards,
John Oakes.

DAVY SAYS: Thanks for your email John and yes it was terribly sad about Zabana. The jockeys championship isn’t something that is at the forefront of my mind and it’s far too early to even think about it. I tend to take a day to day approach but that said any jockey would have it on their agenda depending on how the numbers were looking in a few months time. Apples Jade is a high class filly but Gordon (Elliott) told At The Races that she will go straight to Cheltenham now for the mares’ race, so that’s probably where she will head I imagine.

If you have a question for Davy drop us a line at and we’ll try and include in the next blog…

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