Saturday 30th November 2019
Author: Jordan Yates
Images: Jordan Yates
A big welcome to my Saturday Preview for the week where I’m taking a look at the Newbury feature which is the Ladbrokes Trophy. As normal I’ll be giving a runner-by-runner guide before giving my placings prediction. The race is a Grade 2 Handicap that’s contested over a distance just shy of three miles and two furlongs and the race has a very rich history with taking performances from the likes of Denman and Smad Place which will stay in the mind for some time.
As is normally the case the race is an extremely competitive affair and this year’s renewal is currently headed by Nicky Henderson’s Ok Corral who sports the JP McManus silks and is a general 6/1 chance. He’s a lightly-raced sort for his age and a smart performer on his day, his best performance coming when decisively beating Secret Investor in a Listed Chase at Warwick last season, he should stay the trip and acts on heavy going. Willie Mullins sends Munster National winner Cabaret Queen to take her place in the line-up. She destroyed the field that day on the back of a breathing operation and should also have no issue with the going or distance, you can find her trading at a general 15/2. Mullins also sends dual Cheltenham Festival winner Yorkhill, one of the best around a few years ago but looks a shadow of his former self as of late.
Colin Tizzard has several runners in the field and the first of these is Mister Malarky who’s set to be ridden by Jonjo O’Neil Jr. He put in a fine effort when second in a Grade 3 at Aintree on his final outing of last season and will be a lot better for his recent outing at Ascot where he looked tired when fading away. Also representing Tizzard here is Elegant Escape who finds himself at the top end of the weights, winner of the Welsh Grand National last year he was a fine second in the Charlie Hall Chase on reappearance earlier on this month. Concluding the Tizzard trio is West Approach who’s the mount of Robbie Power, he’s somewhat of an enigma however finally got his act together with a smooth success at Cheltenham last time out and subsequently finds himself as a general 10/1 chance for this particular affair.
Seven Barrows also have a handful of more runners in the line-up. On The Blind Side sits in the market at around 11/1 and is the mount of Nico de Boinville, he was last seen when finishing fourth behind Vinndication at Ascot. Brave Eagle and Beware The Bear also represent Henderson, the former had a productive summer winning a valuable race at Uttoxeter in June and the latter won the Ultima Handicap at the Cheltenham Festival. There are several other interesting contenders in the field to look at, Alan King’s Dingo Dollar was third in the race last year and is set to contest this year’s renewal off a two-pound lower mark. De Rasher Counter won a Novice Chase here last December for Emma Lavelle and followed up with a win in a similar event at Uttoxeter, he’s a general 10/1 chance under Ben Jones. Gordon Elliot sends Borice who trades at 16/1 under Daryl Jacob and is chasing a four-timer.
I’m siding with another win in the race for Willie Mullins and the progressive looking CABARET QUEEN. Her jumping has been polished up nicely since joining Willie as we saw when she demolished a field in the Munster National, she also proved that day that she handles testing going and if carrying on the level of progression she’s shown lately a bold showing could very well be on the cards. I’ve also sided with WEST APPROACH again for Tizzard and Power, he’s a tentative selection giving his well-known questionable temperament however on the back of his win at Cheltenham last time I feel Robbie has worked out exactly how to ride him and when to play his hand. If things go to plan this strong traveller might go well again.
1st: CABARET QUEEN (9/1)
2nd: WEST APPROACH (10/1)
3rd: OK CORRAL (7/1)
4th: MISTER MALARKY (7/1)