The second day of 2019 Aintree Festival features Politologue and Min reappearing in the same race again after both horses failed to beat Altior at Cheltenham. That contest plus three novice events are covered in this article alongside the remainder of the races.
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Set to carry top weight for this 2m4f handicap, Brio Conti seemed set to win the Coral Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival until finding little up the famous hill and eventually finishing fourth. The 8-year-old had won his prep race at Ascot and should appreciate this flatter tracker and the slightly shorter distance than at Cheltenham. Tedham could be an each-way hope after winning a Wincanton handicap on his previous outing despite carrying 11st11lb.
Selections: Brio Conti to Win @ 6/1 with bet365.
Tedham (each-way) @ 10/1 with bet365.
Nicky Henderson opted to bypass Cheltenham with his 6-year-old gelding Precious Cargo and Aintree is the aim after he won both novices hurdles this term culminating in an eight-length victory at Sandown last month. Rival trainer Paul Nicholls is likely to saddle Southfield Stone who beat Angels Breath last time at Kempton, but he was beaten in two previous starts.
Selection: Precious Cargo to Win @ 5/1 with bet365.
For this three-miles novices chase, Topofthegame will be aiming to follow his victory in the RSA at Cheltenham by winning this contest. However, Lostintranslation could be an interesting contender from the Colin Tizzard stable after a decent second-placing in the JLT novices chase at Cheltenham. He has now finished twice second behind Defi Du Seuil over approximately 2m4f and he could appreciate this extra distance.
Seelction: Lostintranslation to Win @ 3/1 with Betfred.
Racing over 2m4f, Politiologue and Min will renew rivalry after finishing second and fifth respectively in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. Both horses should be equally effective over this extra distance but one other horse to note is the Ruth Jefferson trained Waiting Patiently. More rain would further help his chances but he was not disgraced when second behind Cyrname at Ascot back in February, and he will be a fitter horse for that run where Politologue was a further three lengths behind in fourth position.
Selection: Waiting Patiently to Win @ 5/2 with Betfred.
Ultragold has won this 2m5f race over the Grand National fences for the past two seasons, but favourite for the 2019 is likely to be the Nicky Henderson trained top-weight Janika. However, the 6-year-old gelding has finished second in his last three races and there was a suggestion that he did not wish to pass Siruh Du Lac at Cheltenham. Of more appeal is the lightly weighted Call It Magic who led the Becher Chase back in November before losing the race after the final fence. The shorter distance of this contest may be more suitable. Of the each-way contenders, Activial has been consistent on flatter courses this season but does not seem to produce his best form at Cheltenham.
Selection: Call It Magic to Win @ 14/1 with William Hill.
Activial (each-way) – 25/1 with William Hill.
Following his two-lengths defeat by City Island in the 2m5f Ballymore Novices Hurdle, Champ will contest this three-miler with his performance at Cheltenham suggesting that this extra distance would suit. He was previously unbeaten in four races over hurdles. Another Cheltenham runner-up Dallas Des Pictons could be a danger as he had previously won over three miles at Leopardstown, while Emitom has yet to beaten under National Hunt Rules and convincingly beat Albert Bartlett fifth-placed horse Lisnagar Oscar back in November.
Selection: Champ to Win @ 11/4 with Betfred.
The Kim Bailey trained Adjourned has raced just once but scored convincingly when beating ten other opponents in a Southwell NH flat race during October. This flat course and ground should be suitable so expect another decent effort from this grey gelding while Ebony Jewel was a very easy winner of a minor event at Ayr last month and could be decent each-way value.
Selections: Adjourned (each-way) xxxx NON-RUNNER
Ebony Jewel (each-way) @ 12/1 with Betfair.
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