The Mega (Rescheduled Saturday) – 16th February

A mammoth amount of racing to go through thanks to the quick action of the BHA to move the Denman Chase and Betfair Hurdle, so don’t expect essays for the races here. If you want me to go further in depth, then please tweet @KeejayOV2 or email








12.30 – Thames Materials Novices’ Hurdle (Class 2) (5yo+): The betting has this as a tasty matchup between I Can’t Explain and Deise Aba, with the latter slightly preferred after a taking maiden win at Chepstow when he got the better of the subsequent dual winner Queennohearts, who won a Grade 2 at Sandown yesterday. Russian Hawk and Dashel Drasher need respecting.


Advice: 2 pts win Deise Aba (6/4 general)



1.00 –  Ascot Supports Berkshire Community Foundation Handicap Hurdle (Class 2)(4yo+): Ballyandy is a very smart horse at his best  as evidenced by his Betfair Hurdle win and brief chasing career, and a couple pf promising runs over hurdles, including a comprehensive win at Uttoxeter when last seen. He can go close here.


Advice: 1 pt win Ballyandy (6/1 general)


1.35 – Sodexo Reynoldstown Novices’ Chase (Grade 2) (Class 1) (5yo+): A claim can be made for all of Top Ville Ben, Mister Malarky, Now McGinty, Yalltari, and Coup De Pinceau and perhaps this is one to just watch.


Advice: No bet.



2.10 – Keltbray Swinley Chase (A Limited Handicap) (Listed Race) (Class 1) (5yo+): Coneygree wasn’t upto the King George but looked much more like his old self when he was third in a good Cheltenham handicap and if he can get into a rhythm then he’s likely to be very competitive here. Ascot ought to suit him well and a mark of 159 is fair on his best ability. Double up with Art Maureqsue, who would have a big say on his second in a very valuable handicap here in November.


Advice: 1 pt win Coneygree (11/2 Hills), 1 pt each/way Art Mauresque (8/1 general)



2.45 –  Betfair Denman Chase (Grade 2) (Class 1) (5yo+): A lovely spot for Clan Des Obeaux and Terrefort to prep for the spring and the prices look about right. Ballyhill and Thomas Patrick have found a nice spot to tune up for different targets.


Advice: No bet.


3.20 – Betfair Hurdle (Handicap) (Grade 3) (Class 1) (4yo+): Al Dancer has improved rapidly with each of his hurdling starts after his Aintree bumper fourth and can take this on his way to launching a bold bid for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. An 11 length winner at Cheltenham in December, the runner up has since won a decent contest at Taunton to underline the strength of that performance and he ought to go well here.


Getaway Trump is dropping back in trip but ought to enjoy the likely strong gallop on this track whilst the same can be said of Didtheyleaveuoutto, who was disappointing when fifth in a strong novice hurdle at Kempton. Nothing has really come to light for that run which is a worry but if at his best, he’ll take the beating.



One who makes a lot of each/way appeal is Lisp. Alan King’s five year old was second in the Ladbroke before Christmas when second to the former County Hurdle winner Mohayed and previously he’d been second to the subsequent Grade 2 winner Global Citizen. That is very strong form and the move back to Ascot will benefit him a good deal.



Advice: 2 pts win Al Dancer (5/2 general), 1 pt each/way Lisp (8/1 general)


Ante Post: 1 pt each/way Al Dancer, Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (10/1 general)


3.55 – Betfair Ascot Chase (Grade 1) (Class 1) (5yo+): Thanks to a late season setback, unsuitably quick ground for much of this winter, and unavoidably bad luck on his return in the King George VI Chase, Waiting Patiently has jumped just nine fences in public since his impressive win in this last year, but if given the go ahead, is worth backing to keep up his remarkable record.


Cryname’s brilliant win in a handicap here is worthy of respect but it came from out of the blue and everything about this scenario is rather different. Previous performances of his are standing up well but his promises to be a more difficult assignment. We have Politologue backed for the Ryanair Chase and are hoping for a good run, but the fly in the ointment might just be the former Melling Chase winner Fox Norton, who romped home at Aintree in 2017 when he also won Punchestown’s Champion Chasse. He picked up easy money for his return behind Altior, and if spot on, can play a big part. Aso has impressed with his two recent handicap wins and was third in last year’s Ryanair, whilst Charbel rounds off a strong field.



Advice: 2 pts win Waiting Patiently (7/4 general)



4.30 – Best Racing On Racing TV Handicap Hurdle (Qualifier For The Challenger Staying Hurdle Series Final) (Class 3) (4yo+ 0-125): A great deal of runners here have a serious chance with Daydram Alumes currently at the head of the market but Worthy Farm, Trixter, Modern Warfair, Lygon Rock, and Another Emotion all on any reasonably shortlist. Perhaps it’s best left.



Advice: No bet.



5.00 – British EBF Mares’ Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race (Qualifier For The EBF Mares’ NHF Series) (Class 4) (4-6yo): Silver Forever, third in a good Listed event at Huntington, is likely to be popular but in this open event it makes sense to have a watching brief. Lunar Baby’s debut win was eyecatching.


Advice: No bet.  





1.55 – William Hill Rendlesham Hurdle (Grade 2) (Class 1) (4yo+): It will be hard to beat Yanworth, who was sixth in the Stayers last season, but this is his first run since and that makes him easy enough to leave at evens. Clyne, a little disappointing in the Reelkeel Hurdle, is the next best in the market but perhaps this is a watching brief with Shades of Midnight ready to pick up the pieces.


Advice: No bet.



3.35 – William Hill Grand National Trial Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (Class 1) (5yo+): Several have a serious chance at their best but Impulsive Star was really impressive when he took the Classic Chase and a 6lbs rise for that appears to be very fair at face value. If Ramses De Teillee manages to carry his Chepstow form then he will take all the beating here but this looks just as competitive and perhaps Robinsfifth, second in the Peter Marsh, is the best option.



Advice: 1 pt each/way Impulsive Star (9/1 general), 1 pt each/way Robinsfirth (8/1 general)





2.20 – Betway Mares’ Chase (Listed Race) (Class 1) (5yo+): The strong stayer Rons Dream was fourth in the Welsh National and if she’s over the that effort she ought to really take the beating here, having previously beaten second favorite Atlanta Ablaze. Molly Childers


Advice: 3 pts win Rons Dream (15/8 general)





3.00 – Betway Kingwell Hurdle (Grade 2) (Class 1) (4yo+): A cracking contest which ties many different formlines. Sceau Royal is going back over hurdles and disappointed last time, but he’d been pretty much flawless for a year before that and sets a high standard. Vision Des Flos was swiped aside by Buveur D’Air in the Contenders but we ought to see the worth of that form now whilst Grand Sancy should show us where the Tolworth (and therefore novice form) stands, making this a must watch race.



Advice: No bet.






1.50 – Red Mills Trial Hurdle (Grade 3) (4yo+): This is fascinating but not necessarily in a good way. Coeur Sublime has got to jump better, Darasso has to bounce back from a poor run in the Galmoy, Farclas has to run to form for the first time since the Triumph of last year, and Forge Meadow has to do the same since taking this last year. Save your money.


Advice: No bet.



2.30 – Red Mills Chase (Grade 2) (5yo+): A fascinating four runner match up with all sorts of potential factors here. Monalee should enjoy going over 2m4f after a creditable run in the Savils Chase when second although he has to give 7lbs to Killulatagh Vic, who has only just come back to form with a third in the Galmoy Hurdle. The really interesting one is Anibale, Fly, who has had a couple of engagements and missed them due to a number of factors but who was third in the Gold Cup and fourth in the Grand National, and whilst this trip is a tad short for him it could be said that’s the case of both Killultagh Vic and the outsider Edwulf. We have Monalee backed for the Ryanair but there are worse contenders to have for the Gold Cup than Anibale Fly.



Advice: 1 pt each/way Anibale Fly, Gold Cup (33/1 general)