Horse Racing

Aintree Ladies Day Tips: Inthepocket can line punters’ pockets at Aintree

Onto the second day of the three-day Aintree Festival. Friday is Ladies Day. Let’s take a look at today’s action and see what the best bets for each race might be.

Aintree Tips
Photo by Icon Sport

13:45 Air Charter Service Military Novices’ Chase

Ladies Day kicks off with a six-runner affair over fences. It looks competitive, though Gerri Colombe rates as a clear favourite, currently holding strong at 8/11.

Much was expected from Gordon Elliott’s seven-year-old at Cheltenham, though he flattered to deceive when sent off the 5/4 favourite for the Brown Advisory, finishing second to The Real Whacker. However, he wasn’t beaten far and he was closing all the way to the line, so it wouldn’t be much of a surprise if he gained compensation here, especially with just five rivals to beat.

Those looking for one at a price should consider Thomas Darby, who won nicely at Ayr last time out. Sure, this is step up in class, but he did the job well at the Scottish venue, hinting that there could be more to come, while he also rates highly among this field in terms of speed ratings. At big odds, he looks the best option if opposing the short-price fav.

Best Bet: Thomas Darby (each-way) @ 20/1

14:20 William Hill Handicap Hurdle

Plenty in this race warrant respect, including Campround, who comes here off the back of a great effort behind last year’s winner of this race Langer Dan at Cheltenham. That form is strong, so it’s easy to see why he’s an early favourite.

There are many in here with solid chances, though, and it could pay to go for something at a bigger price. One of the less exposed types to appeal is Dargiannini for Harry Derham. The lightly-raced eight-year-old arrives here off the back of two impressive successes and he looks progressive. The form of his Uttoxeter win looks strong, so don’t be surprised if he gets involved.

At larger odds, Molly Ollys Wishes rates as an each-way player for Dan Skelton, who won this race last year and who knows how to ready one for a big handicap hurdle, as we saw at Cheltenham. This runner has some good form in the book and sits highly on the speed ratings list.

Best Bets: Dargiannini (each-way) @ 10/1, Molly Ollys Wishes (each-way) @ 33/1

14:55 Poundland Top Novices’ Hurdle

Unlike some of yesterday’s graded action, this is incredibly competitive, as the early betting suggests.

Inthepocket is perhaps the most interesting option. The six-year-old arrives at Aintree having finished a good fourth behind the hugely impressive Marine Nationale in the Supreme Novices at Cheltenham and that form must be taken seriously. This race doesn’t quite demand as much and it would be little surprise if the gelding got the job done under the ever-impressive Rachel Blackmore.

Best Bet: Inthepocket @ 4/1

15:30 Marsh Chase

Fakir D’oudairies won this race last year and as he bids to defend his crown, he may be hard to stop. However, there are some other strong types in this field, including Hitman, who is a year older than when finishing second here 12 months ago.

The Paul Nicholls runner got to within a couple of lengths of Shishkin at Cheltenham, which is better than Fakir D’oudairies did with that runner earlier in the year, so don’t be surprised if he reverses the form with last year’s winner.

Best Bet: Hitman @ 6/1

16:05 Randox Supports Race Against Dementia Topham Handicap

Another fiercely competitive handicap sees any number of horses go to post with chances. Ashton Lad will be popular for the Skelton’s and rightly so, though for me, Numitor is the each-way pick of the race.

This nine-year-old has been consistent this season, both on the clock and in terms of finishing high up the placings. He also swerved Cheltenham, which could be in his favour here following a strong second at Newbury last time out. A mere repeat of that effort would surely see the mount of Adam Wedge make his presence felt in this race.

Best Bet: Numitor (each-way) @ 25/1

16:40 Winners Wear Cavani Sefton Novices’ Hurdle

Iroko is sure to be all the rage here following his hat-trick win at the Cheltenham Festival, though the handicapper has had yet another say, so that one may need to continue improving to extend his current unbeaten run.

Stay Away Fay is an interesting contender for Harry Fry. The very lightly raced six-year-old won the Albert Bartlett at Cheltenham and now hold solid claims here, though a 12lb hike in the weights demands more.

Lucinda Russell’s festival is largely about Corach Rambler in the big one on Saturday, but she has a nice one in this race in Apple Away, who rates as an excellent each-way bet for my money. Lurking at the bottom of the weights, she won very well at Doncaster in listed company last time out, posting a solid speed rating in the process. This is harder, but she ought to have more to give.

Best Bet: Apple Away (each-way) @ 11/1

17:15 Abersoch Land And Sea Handicap Hurdle

Nothing like ending the card with a take-your-pick 22-runner handicap hurdle. Each-way punters can fill their boots here, as there are several with claims.

Go Dante is rightly popular in the early betting, as is JPR One. Soul Icon is a really interesting runner for Keiran Burke. This prolific winner arrives here off the back of five straight wins and he’s clearly been waited with for this race.

A strong winner at Cheltenham when last seen in October, the six-year-old is no stranger to winning fresh and needs taken very seriously here. Early odds of 12/1 could turn out to be on the generous side.

Best Bet: Soul Icon (each-way) at 12/1

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