Hot Rod Can Spring A Surprise At Newbury

Measureofmydreams was in contention for a long way in the Irish National, even if the commentators missed him completely for the vast majority of the race. He travelled nicely out wide at the head of the group behind the leading three, but a couple of mistakes at key moments cost him dearly. He ended up in 9th, beaten a short head for 8th, and if Noel Meade can find the key to this fella he will have a well handicapped horse on his hands next season.
The winner was ultra-impressive, and Jessica Harrington has a couple of serious staying chasers on her hands. Robbie Power gave Our Duke a superb ride, keeping him out of trouble and giving the relatively inexperienced 7yo son of Oscar a good sight of his fences. To win an Irish National by 14L with over 11 stone is no mean feat, and the 1-2 could be on for Jessie in the Gold Cup next year.
Oisin Murphy looks a good booking for Sir Roderic.
Oisin Murphy is riding out of his skin at the moment, and when I was looking through the entries for the Spring Handicap at Newbury I couldn’t help but notice he had been booked to ride Sir Roderic for Rod Millman. The Millmans think that Sir Roderic is a well handicapped horse and he can be forgiven his run in the consolation race for the Lincoln given that he was drawn on the wrong side. He ought to strip fitter with that run behind him and Murphy is 10/49 with 14 places when riding for Millman.
The handicapper has dropped him a pound for his last effort to a mark of 95, and he was only beaten a neck in a handicap at Newmarket (8f gd/fm) the last time he raced off that rating. All his wins have come with a bit of cut in the ground, but that run at Newmarket was a career best so the forecast ground at Newbury holds no fears. High numbers are favoured at Newbury, and he has been handed a decent draw in stall 17. It looks a competitive contest, but Sir Roderic can be backed at odds of 25/1 and at that price he looks well worth chancing each way.

STEVOS’ SELECTION: 15.40 NEWBURY-SIR RODERIC E/W @ 25/1

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