Three-time course scorer Scotswell flies the flag for Borders trainer Harriet Graham in the feature race at Kelso today.
The Jedburgh raider, partnered by Tommy Dowson, faces six rivals in the 3m 2f £17,000 EDF-ER Handicap Chase.
Graham said: “He’s very well after a three month break but maybe this trip is on the short side for him.
“He will run from the front as usual but he’s a real stamina horse. It looks a quite a decent race and he’s up against a few horses fit from the summer. The Borders National back at Kelso in December is again the aim and it’s a race he’s been second in twice.”
Among the opposition are last month’s Warwick winner Kilfinichen Bay, trained by Charlie Longdon, and Tim Vaughan’s Ballyrock who won at Southwell earlier this month.
Paul Nicholls boasts a handsome strike-rate of 57 per cent at Kelso and he is double-handed with Brio Conti in the Ian Anderson Memorial “National Hunt” Maiden Hurdle and Warriors Tale in the Clifford & Martin Firth Memorial Novices’ Chase. Both are ridden by Sean Bowen who has ridden one winner from his previous three rides at the track.
Lorcan Murtagh makes a welcome return to action on Wicked Games in the B.A.R.K. Conditional Jockeys Training Series Handicap Hurdle. The teenager, who landed last season’s Eider Chase on Rocking Blues, has been sidelined with serious leg injuries since a spill from King’s Chorister at Hexham on April 30.
Ante-post betting for the Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster should tell its own story.
Capri had been the early jolly for the Group One on Town Moor, but a stack of cash for stablemate Yucatan saw the market flip-flop in significant favour of the latter. And with Aidan O’Brien having now taken out Capri, it really is quite difficult to side against Yucatan, the mount of Ryan Moore.
The Galileo colt has reportedly made boundless improvement since he was defeated by Capri in the Beresford Stakes at the Curragh last month. But Ballydoyle have rarely faltered in their preparations for a big British day out and can be trusted to get Yucatan home.