The Flat returns this weekend with the Lincoln at Doncaster, while there is some good action over the Jumps at Newbury.

As usual, Nick Luck – fresh off a very successful Cheltenham with 11 winners – is back to preview all the action.


FAYLAQ is worth a chance at 5/2 to show that he can start living up to his illustrious pedigree in the TV opener at Kempton on Saturday (1.45pm). By Dubawi out of Arc winner Danedream, he remains in training with William Haggas having been gelded since his last run. He has some ground to make up with Global Giant on their meeting at Newbury, but he was set quite a bit to do in a tactical race that day and it is significant that his one previous try at this track resulted in a career best.

UNITED FRONT looks a nice each-way bet at 7/1 in the Rosebery (2.15pm). Ex-Aidan O’Brien, he is obviously bred to be smart and – although he’s finished second numerous times – he has continued to progress with every race for trainer Mick Appleby. The way he stuck at it at Chelmsford last time having been hampered suggested to me that this extra furlong would suit fine (he’s out of a Galileo mare) and another tiny step forward will see him in the mix, even if there are some higher profile connections represented.


SPACE TRAVELLER is a pretty good horse to be receiving weight in the Listed Doncaster Mile (2.00pm), but his longish absence makes him favoured by race conditions here. He ran pretty respectably on his only start last season in the Queen Anne, in which a stop-start pace would have been against him, and I am hoping that he can make a winning comeback at 5/1 for a stable whose horses have been going okay of late.

INTO FAITH and ANYTHINGTODAY are two at huge prices that I like to hit the frame in the Spring Mile (2.35pm). Into Faith (22/1) did most of his racing in France last year, but he might have escaped the handicapper’s clutches a bit, because on his penultimate start at Saint Cloud he split two horses that have both gone on to bolt up in Listed races. I like that fact that he comes back to a mile here, that he has been gelded, and that the trainer shows intent by claiming with the red-hot Rhys Clutterbuck. Anythingtoday (22/1) is hard to win with and is a bit more speculative, but this drop in trip is interesting – coming from off the pace with a chilly ride might unlock his undoubted ability (and he’s well handicapped) and Adam Kirby rides for the first time.

GROVE FERRY might have been a bit overlooked at 16/1 in the Lincoln (3.10pm). He is becoming a very likeable horse and I thought he did well when the ground was a bit too soft at the back end of last year. He took a nice step forward at Lingfield the other day, has good form on this track in a big field, and William Carver’s five-pound claim offsets the penalty for a stable who are set for another massive year.

The other one I like at odds here is MAN OF THE NIGHT at 22/1, who is none too reliable, but is going down to a really tempting mark and ran quite eye-catchingly in the Lincoln Trial.

CHIEFOFCHIEFS is a very tricky horse to get a handle on – and shouldn’t be good enough to win the Cammidge (3.45pm) on official ratings, but he’s definitely hiding his ability half the time and I suspect he’ll run better in a better – and more strongly run – race. The pace on here is 100% guaranteed and there’s a big enough field for a Listed race, too, which will suit. If he can find a bit of trouble in running, so much the better. Jamie Spencer might be the perfect fit for this horse at 14/1.


SOMETIMES ALWAYS is a value play in a very, very competitive race at Newbury (2.50pm). This horse had been winning in spite of adverse conditions until getting stuck in the glue at Sandown last time in the EBF Final, where he actually ran way better than the distance he was beaten. He is a massive price here at 11/1, but he’ll get his ideal conditions for the first time since posting a career best at Wetherby earlier in the season, form that makes him look pretty fairly treated.

LILLY PEDLAR might be the answer to the feature mares’ race at on the card at Newbury (3.25pm). Still a maiden, she has nonetheless shown plenty of ability, with easily her best start coming behind the much vaunted and very impressive Boothill on relatively decent ground at Taunton. She has been a bit disappointing since, but very testing conditions could easily be the reason for that, and her trainer is a past master at getting one spot-on for this race. She’s an 8/1 chance.

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