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Richard Hoiles: Four Saturday picks for Doncaster and elsewhere

22 Mar | BY Richard Hoiles | MIN READ TIME |
Richard Hoiles: Four Saturday picks for Doncaster and elsewhere

The horse racing broadcaster picks out his selections for Saturday's racing and highlights two runners from his horse tracker.

Hardly has the dust settled on the Cheltenham Festival than the start of the Flat is heralded at Doncaster with the Lincoln. In truth, the weather has seemed far more Autumnal than Spring, and the going will certainly be testing on Town Moor.

The first two from last year’s Lincoln, Migration and AWAAL / (15:35 Doncaster) line up again and with conditions similar to 12 months ago both should be leading players. Neither won after their efforts last year, meaning that Awaal lines up off the same mark with a 4lb pull at the weights for Migration. Awaal impressed with the way he travelled that day and should give another good account. There is also the 2022 winner Johan in the field, along with Chazzesmee, who is looking for his second Lincoln win in a week having won the Irish equivalent just five days ago.

In the opening race at Doncaster, CHARYN / (13:20 Doncaster) can take advantage of a drop in grade having been campaigned in Group company throughout last term. Third in the St James’s Palace to Paddington and Chaldean and second in the Greenham to Isaac Shelby on his first run last year, he has proven he handles cut in the ground well. Astral Beau – the mud-loving winner of the race last year – and Hollywood Boy – third to Auguste Rodin over course and distance as a juvenile – look best of the rest, but Silvestre De Sousa back from a lengthy suspension can give Roger Varian’s charge a confidence-boosting win before stepping back up in grade.

Away from Doncaster, ITV are taking a race from Bangor where JUNGLE JACK / (13:30 Bangor) has had his Kelso second to Cracking Rhapsody well and truly franked by both that horse and Ginger Mail filling the first two positions in the Morebattle Hurdle. The handicapper has raised Jungle Jack 3lbs, no doubt due to that collateral form, but he has a good Bangor record and can give weight away to Pickanumber, who bids for a hat-trick for Olly Murphy under very promising young claimer Dylan Johnston.

In the evening, BERNIE THE BEAR (18:45 Wolverhampton) can finally get his head in front after a string of placed efforts since joining Linda Perratt from Richard Fahey. He won over course and distance off today’s mark in December and looked unlucky earlier in the week not to finish closer, after clipping heels and then meeting trouble off the home turn.


Here are the jockeys in action on Saturday at tracks where they have a good career record:

DONCASTER: Jamie Spencer (104/659, A/E 1.14). Rides 14 per cent more winners than market expectations and done so from a massive sample. He only has the one ride – Thunder Roar in the Spring Mile at 14:25

NEWCASTLE: Saffie Osborne (10/43, A/E 2.43) A smaller sample size but another going quite a long way for one ride – Miss Alpilles in the 18:30 for Ed Walker.

WOLVERHAMPTON: Jack Mitchell (151/848, A/E 1.14). A full book of rides for Jack, which includes Laheg in the 18:15 whom he won on last time at Lingfield.


Two stable tracker horses on Saturday afternoon, starting with ZHANG FEI (13:40 Newbury) who was far too keen to last home on his hurdling debut at Wincanton but briefly had the short-priced favourite under pressure. He stayed 1m 4f well enough on the level, and with a couple of front runners in the race in Goodwin and Cannock Park hopefully he can distribute his energy a little more efficiently.

The other is KARTOON AND CO / (14:10 Newbury) who runs in one of the nine ITV televised races. He should probably have won last time at Sandown where the winner rather got first run, but he stayed on well as if this step up in trip will suit. He looks very well-handicapped on his Market Rasen run behind Givemefive, and even though this is a stronger race against older horses he does receive a healthy weight for age allowance. His chief opponent could be Into The Park, a horse who won twice for the tracker earlier this season and whose trainer, Philip Hobbs, identified this race as a target a while ago.

You can view the stable as it stands in full here.


The three different strands with their actual vs expected winners and overall performance.

Stable Tracker: 5/5.12, A/E 0.98
Day Selections: 9/10.03, A/E 0.90
Jockeys For Courses: 14/13.75, A/E 1.02
Total Column Performance: 28/28.9, A/E 0.97

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Richard Hoiles

Richard Hoiles

Richard is a horse racing broadcaster and commentator who has been involved in the sport since 1992.

Richard Hoiles

Richard Hoiles

Richard is a horse racing broadcaster and commentator who has been involved in the sport since 1992.