Murphy and Skelton targeting Warwick glory
AFTER last week's double-header to start the new season, racing returns behind closed doors at Warwick tomorrow, Thursday, with an early start to the seven-race card that gets under way at 12.10pm, writes David Hucker.
Wilmcote trainer Olly Murphy has declared all three of his entries in the opening Bet At racingtv.com Mares' "National Hunt" Novices' Hurdle over the minimum trip of two miles, with former champion jockey Richard Johnson on the once-raced Fivetotwelve, suggesting that she is the pick of the trio.
Pogo I Am won well at Stratford, but didn't seem to take to Southwell's brush hurdles next time, and hurdles debutant Marada, the choice from three entries for Dan Skelton, is worth a look.
Point-to-point winner Es Perfecto, who made a pleasing start to his career over jumps when third to Hoi Polloi at Kempton Park in February, could be the one for the racingtv.com Maiden Hurdle over two miles and five furlongs, although the lightly-raced Tide Times is an interesting runner for Alvechurch trainer Ian Williams.
Just four have been declared for the Join Racing TV Now Beginners' Chase with Getaway Trump the pick on official ratings.
His first run since wind surgery saw him finish last of three at Fontwell Park, which doesn't inspire confidence, and past course winner Golden Taipan could be the one to be on for leading trainer Fergal O'Brien.
There is a competitive field of 15 for the Watch Irish Racing On RacingTV Handicap Hurdle and trainer Jonjo O'Neill runs top-weight Bhutan from his two entries.
Movie lovers will know that Miss Honey Ryder, played by Ursula Andress, was a character in Dr No, the first of the James Bond franchise, and the equine version, who got her head in front over hurdles at Huntingdon in February, is looking to follow up here.
Champion jockey Brian Hughes is an interesting booking for Vancouver, but it's Calum Gilhooley, twice a winner in novice company, including a defeat of Templepark, who gets the vote.
Global Tour never got into contention at Perth last time, but is a consistent performer and one to consider in the feature Class 3 Use The racingtv.com Tracker Handicap Chase, although dual winner Court Master, having his first run since wind surgery, might have the edge in receipt of 2lbs.
Pink Sheets, a winner over the course last week, sets the standard in the Follow @Racingtv On Twitter Mares' Handicap Hurdle and Captain Morgs is the pick of champion trainer Nicky Henderson's four entries in the concluding racingtv.com Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race.