Don’t forget to say Grace in the Betfair Hurdle

Ray Flanagan with Saturday selections

thought for the day: I have never picked the winner of the famous Newbury handicap hurdle, formerly the Tote Gold Trophy and now known as the Betfair Hurdle.

Just the one race that interests me today where Nicky Henderson (pictured ) holds a prime hand.

Newbury 3.35- Kayf Grace, Charli Parcs and Bleu Et Rouge

Kayf Grace is a lightly raced eight-year old mare who comes from the family of Denman. She displayed good form at Aintree when winning a bumper in 2016 beating useful yardsticks includiong Augusta Kate and Shattered Love.

She has had her problems since with only a few appearances but showed she retains plenty of ability when winning comfortably in an admittedly poor Kempton contest on December 27th (my birthday)

I think this mare is more of a staying type though and am expecting her to be better served by a stiff test at two miles than a speedier test at Kempton. She could be ahead of the assessor and is capable of a having a say.

Charli Parcs underperformed in the Racing Welfare Hurdle at Ascot last time but I was still impressed by the way he made late ground. Highly touted by Henderson last season, we have not yet seen the best of this horse and ground conditions are putting people off today. Nonetheless he has won on soft in France and is a much better horse than his price implies.

Henderson has another strong prospect with Verdana Blue, however prevailing ground conditions sway me towards Blue Et Rouge. Willie Mullins representative is likely to be at concert pitch following two races after an absence and his Ascot fourth was certainly encouraging. Similar to Kayf Grace he is more of a stayer than a speedster and the further rain that falls the better his chance.

Recommended Bets ( 5 places each way)

0.75 pts ew-Kayf Grace-3.35 Newbury-12-1 General

0.5 pts ew-Charli Parcs-3.35 Newbury-40-1 General

0.5 pts ew-Bleu Et Rouge-3.35 Newbury-14-1 General

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