Plumpton Sunday

12:38 Follow @attheraces On Twitter Novices’ Chase 2m 3f 164y

A tight race with a Cheltenham bonus on. Nassalam will be favoured, but he was only third best at Newbury on his penultimate start, and was gifted victory by mishaps in front of him. He then ran moderately here behind For Pleasure, and isn’t one to bank on.

Elixir Du Nutz comes from a yard which has suddenly lost form, with 16 runners in the past fortnight yielding no winners and just one place, leaving Annual Invictus, who flopped at Aintree last time after wins at Cheltenham and over course and distance.

He’s reunited with Tom Cannon here, under whom he’s gained all but one of his wins, and with his ability on the ground and at the track proven, he looks the safest choice, with his Aintree run easy to forgive in isolation.

1.45 Free Replays On Handicap Hurdle 2m 4f 114yds

Best bet over hurdles on the Plumpton card comes in this modest handicap, where the handicapper has been very generous to fairly useful flat performer Cochise. A winner of both his starts on soft/heavy turf when with Roger Charlton, he ran well in a flat handicap for professional jump jockeys at Goodwood in October, making the running and sticking on over two miles.

Three runs over hurdles have not seen Cochise to best effect, and his opening mark is just 10lb higher than the mark he ran off at Goodwood despite a discrepancy in scale of around 35lb. If he’s as effective over hurdles as on the flat, he should be running to a mark of around 110, accepting that there is no reliable way of converting such ratings.

A mark of 84 is that of a moderate handicapper in this sphere, but he’s unexposed over hurdles, and is sure to do better if ridden with more enterprise. He’s also from a renowned soft-ground family, with half-brother Mekong gaining his only turf wins on heavy ground. He’s also looked best so far with plenty of ease, and the longer trip here is another positive.

2.20 Sky Sports Racing Sussex National Handicap Chase 3m 4f 102yds

The last two winners of this race meet again, but it could easily be the last three, as I See You Well was travelling ominously well when falling in the 2019 running of the Sussex National, and he has developed a fine record at this track.

His lifetime record at Plumpton reads 11F4111, with his other defeat when reverting to hurdles after his fall. On that occasion, his saddle slipped, and his rider had to kick his feet out of the irons, making that effort more meritorious.

He’s run three times over three and a quarter mile here in 2021, winning all three, and he looked better than ever when beating Mister Murchan by a comfortable five lengths last time. I think that’s strong form, and very much rate his chances here, but the third horse that day also caught the eye, and will arguably be more at home on the prevailing ground.

Go Whatever was third to I See You Well last time, and meets him on 7lb better terms. He was alongside the winner when making a bad mistake four out that day, and I thought he did well to recover from that.

He is now tried in a visor for the first time, and progeny of Gold Well (think Holywell) have a good record when first tried in severe headgear. As a rather indolent sort, I think the visor will help, and he represents the value at current odds.


Annual Invictus 12.38 Plumpton – 2pt win

Cochise 1.45 Plumpton – 2pt win

Go Whatever 2.20 Plumpton – 2pt win

14/1 winner

Rory tipped Kempton winner Jacamar last weekend, advised at 14/1.