ITV Racing Saturday Kelso & Newbury Preview

Joe Glayshier | @joeglayshier

Newbury - March 25 2023
Newbury 13:30
Richard Patrick

Atlanta Brave

J: Richard Patrick
T: Kerry Lee
Age: 5
Weight: 11-11
OR: 125
Days: 54

The first race on the Newbury card on Saturday is the Bet In-Play On Racing With BetVictor Novices’ Handicap Hurdle over 2m 2f. We like the look of the Kerry Lee trained Atlanta Brave, who goes off a mark of 125 for this contest.

Irish point winner who has made a promising start over hurdles, finishing second on debut to the Paul Nicholls trained Beau Balko at Hereford in November, before winning at Chepstow in a class four maiden contest over 2m 3f. He was 7/4 favourite that day and just edged out Ed Keeper by half a length to claim his first victory.

The five-year-old followed that with another win, this time at Hereford in January, beating Hauraki Gulf, who has since finished second on both his runs since at the same level. His ability over hurdles shouldn’t be underestimated against what looks like a good field and we are backing him to do well here and continue his good form for Kerry Lee.

At around 13/2, he looks a very good price considering his good start over obstacles.

Newbury - March 25 2023
Newbury 14:05
Harry Cobden

Espoir De Guye

J: Harry Cobden
T: Paul Nicholls
Age: 9
Weight: 12-0
OR: 140
Days: 21

The second race at Newbury is the Run For Your Money At BetVictor Handicap Chase over 2m 3f. We have picked out two runners that we think could run a good race, with the first of those being 4/1 shot Espoir De Guye.

The nine-year-old is an experienced runner over fences, previously for Venetia Williams, winning several chases at class two level at the likes of Exeter, Ascot and Warwick. Ended his stint with Williams out of form, finishing sixth at Kempton, pulled up at Cheltenham and eighth of 13 at Ascot before switching to the Paul Nicholls yard, making his debut for Nicholls earlier this month in the Greatwood Gold Cup at this C&D, won by The Big Bite. Espoir De Guye finished fifth and he probably needed that run for his new yard and can be better here after that outing.

He goes off a mark of 140 for this race, showing that he still can compete and if back to his best, could run a big race for Nicholls and Harry Cobden.

Newbury - March 25 2023
Newbury 14:05
David Noonan

Honneur D'Ajonc

J: David Noonan
T: Jane Williams
Age: 6
Weight: 11-3
OR: 129
Days: 54

The second runner we like in this race is the six-year-old gelding, Honneur D’Ajonc. He arrives here having won on his most recent outing, edging out Upton Road by just under two lengths to claim a class three handicap over 2m 4f.

He has previously done ok in graded company and has been sent to the Grade One Close Brothers Henry VIII Novices’ Chase at Sandown before by trainer Jane Williams, where Jonbon beat Boothill by eight lengths in December. He has since finished second behind Dan Skelton’s Our Jet at Leicester later that month and then stepped up to win that class three handicap at Hereford in January.

This contest is harder but he is coming good over fences now and goes off what looks like a nice mark of 129 here and is open to more improvement.

Newbury - March 25 2023
Newbury 14:40
Gavin Sheehan


J: Gavin Sheehan
T: Jamie Snowden
Age: 6
Weight: 11-6
OR: 113
Days: 47

The third race at Newbury is the British EBF BetVictor ‘National Hunt’ Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle over 2m 4f, and we like the look of Ebonello as an each-way play in this contest.

The six-year-old makes her handicap debut in this race after winning a Sedgefield bumper in October last year, before impressing on hurdling debut to win at Wincanton in November, staying on strongly to beat Passionate Pursuit by a neck. Below-par next time out at Plumpton in December, finishing seventh of 11, before bouncing back to finish second in a class four novice at Carlisle last month, staying on well after a blunder at the last to finish just under three lengths behind winner Poetic Music, who ran in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival earlier this month.

We think Ebonello can give a good account of herself here on handicap debut off a mark of 113 for the duo of jockey Gavin Sheehan and trainer Jamie Snowden.

Kelso - March 25 2023
Kelso 15:00
Paddy Brennan


J: Paddy Brennan
T: Fergal O'Brien
Age: 6
Weight: 11-11
OR: 110
Days: 13

The third race of the day at Kelso is the BetVictor Herring Queen Series Final Mares’ Novices’ Handicap Hurdle over 2m 51y. The runner we have selected is the current market favourite Bonttay, who is a three-time bumper winner at Market Rasen and Cheltenham (twice).

Has since made a good start over hurdles, winning at Exeter last month after second on debut to Jane Du Berlais at Lingfield in December last year. She also finished second last time out at Market Rasen earlier this month to the promising Olly Murphy gelding Hourvari before heading here. Her opening mark of 110 may underestimate her and we fancy her to claim success here and to also beat Jane Du Berlais after she edged Bonttay out at Lingfield in December but since finished third at Wetherby under a penalty.

Bonttay has a big chance in this contest, and she is the one we are siding with.