Margot Fontaine ran no sort of race for us on Monday and, after racing prominently, the distress signals were being sent out a long way from home. She was first beat, and she was a mile behind Kings Walk, who she was weighted to finish ahead of. It was too bad a run to be true, and she is better than she showed on Monday.
|Tony Kelly does well when riding for Henry Hogarth.
Tomorrow I think Hattons Hill could be worth chancing back at Newcastle after he was pulled up when upped in trip at Catterick last time. He was found to be slightly lame after that race, so he had an excuse and, if he can get back to the form of his excellent 3rd here on his penultimate run off the same mark as he has today, he could give each way backers a run for their money in this 2m 4f class 5 handicap.
That promising course and distance run was just the 2nd handicap start for Hattons Hill, and he showed more than enough ability to suggest he could win a race. He was outpaced early on and at the halfway stage he looked like he would be beaten a country mile. However, he started to make ground when they turned in, and he was gaining ground rapidly on the front two at the finish, beaten just 3L in 3rd at the finish.
Considering how he stayed on, it was a disappointing effort last time upped in trip, but he had a valid excuse. He returns to the scene of his best run off the same mark off which he was 3rd, and he enjoys a 7lb swing in the weights with the horse who was a nose behind the winner in second that day, Under The Red Sky. 7lb for a 3L defeat is a big turnaround, and if Hattons Hill is fully fit and raring to go he should get a strong pace to aim at in this race.
Henry Hogarth has a fine record at Newcastle, sending out 16 winners and 14 to be placed from just 88 runners. Tony Kelly has ridden 7 winners and been placed on 12 of his rides for the trainer. If Hattons Hill is back to the form of his penultimate run, he is capable of producing a big performance off the same mark. He will be staying on late in the day when others have cried enough, and he could reward each way support at odds of 20/1.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: 14.50 NEWCASTLE-HATTONS HILL E/W 20/1