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The Final Furlong



Ante post bet
Supreme Developer 100/1
Grand National, April 8

THE flat season may be up and running but for a lot of people the main focus of attention will be on Liverpool with the Aintree festival beckoning.
The highlight, of course, is one of sport’s great spectacles, the 170th Grand National. Hedgehunter and Clan Royal currently stand head and shoulders above the rest in the betting market and both deserve their places at the top of the pile as they have a number of vital statistics in their favour.
However, I always really having enjoy having a flutter on a big priced outsider and there are definitely a few in the market at the moment that will go off a lot shorter price come 4.15 on Saturday week.
Coming into the National, it’s necessary to have a nice piece of form in the book within three months of the race. I also tend to look for a horse who could get into the race on a feather weight and would be running on when most others around him are stopping.
Of all the horses currently priced up for the big race, I believe Supreme Developer is the most overpriced at 100/1. This was a hugely talented horse when trained in Ireland by Tony Mullins, finishing sixth behind Pizarro and Rhinestone Cowboy in the Champion Bumper, before going on to defeat Alexander Millennium and Hardy Eustace in the Punchestown equivalent. He never took to hurdles and was eventually was sold in November 2004 and sent to England to be trained by the shrewd Ferdy Murphy.
He hasn’t set the world alight since but he has beaten the Bold Bishop and was a decent fourth to Impek back in October. It is his run behind Direct Access at Newcastle in November that caught my eye. He made an awful mistake at the first and never got into the race but he stayed on stoutly and may relish the marathon test that is the National.
Since then he bled and was naturally pulled up at Newbury, but he ran a nice prep race at Sandown on March 11 when fourth to Eric’s Charm and he should be fit for the big race.
He is down to carry just 9st 11Ibs and if he gets in he will not be 100/1 on the day.  A small each-way punt is advised before the field cuts up.
It won’t be too easy to find winners this week with some wide open flat and national hunt meetings taking place on both sides of the pond. On Thursday at Chepstow, we’ll take another chance on the Venetia Williams’ trained Nice Try, who was a non runner last Saturday. He looks like a horse on the improve and he won as he liked at Sandown last time. Philip Hobbs’ Cousin Nicky looks to be one to beat.
At home in Thurles, keep an eye on Dessie Hughes’ Grangeclare Lark who should take all the beating in the bumper. She was second to last weekend’s run away winner Footy Facts and her experience should be a telling factor.
Howard Johnson’s horses are really starting to strike form and on Friday at Newcastle I expect Kinburn to complete a hat-trick at the expense of Sharp Jack and Beauchamp Prince.
The big races on Saturday are the Masaka and Easter Stakes at Kempton, run for the first time on the all weather surface. Entries have yet to be declared in the Easter Stakes but the fillies race looks wide open and if the classy Cross Channel can handle this new surface she should take all the beating. At Uttoxeter, side with Sue Smith’s Rebel Rhythm who should take the beating back over two miles in the novices chase.
Next week we will take a look at the Grand National in depth as well as the many other top classes races down for decision at the Liverpool track. {mos_ri:Fermanagh,Ballinrobe}

Nice Try
Thursday, Chepstow, 3.25
Grangeclare Lark, Thursday, Thurles, 6.10
Friday, Newcastle, 3.50
Cross Channel
Saturday, Kempton, 2.45
Rebel Rhythm
Saturday, Uttoxeter, 3.10

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