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War looks Sound for Novices' Hurdle victory in Exeter

WAR SOUND made a huge impression on his racecourse debut at Exeter on New Year's Day and can take a step up in class in his stride as he returns to the track for the Listed 32RedSport.com 3/1 Mullins Cheltenham Win Novices' Hurdle.

The Philip Hobbs-trained son of Kayf Tara has presumably had a problem or two given he did not see the racecourse until his first day as a six-year-old and double-figure odds suggested he had not been setting the world alight on the the gallops in Minehead. However, with an amateur rider taking a handy burden off his back, War Sound slammed what looked a good field on paper by upwards of 12 lengths and it is no surprise connections have given him a couple of engagements at the Cheltenham Festival.

The form of that debut success is pretty strong, with the runner-up, Southfield Royale, a previous winner of a bumper and a novice hurdle and he has since run perfectly well in defeat on his handicap debut off a mark in the 130s.

War Sound undoubtedly has more on his plate on his second start, but is open to any amount of improvement and will need to make it two from two if he is to head to Prestbury Park next month with realistic claims.

SOUTHFIELD ROYALE is action later in the afternoon and must be worth backing in the Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle.

BURTON PORT gets the nod in an intriguing Willie Or Won't He At 32RedSport.com Veterans' Handicap Chase.

Runner-up in a Hennessy Gold Cup and fourth in a Cheltenham Gold Cup in his pomp, Jonjo O'Neill's 11-year-old is clearly not the force of years gone by.

weekend's selections


LINGFIELD: 1.30 Lucky Dottie, 2.00 Lanai, 2.35 Come On Dave, 3.10 Jack Of Diamonds, 3.45 Boom The Groom, 4.20 Varsovian, 4.50 Caerleon Kate.

NAAS: 1.25 Phil's Magic, 1.55 Vroum Vroum Mag, 2.30 Aengus, 3.05 One Cool Shabra, 3.40 Blood Cotil, 4.15 Noble Call, 4.45 Pylonthepressure.

NEWBURY: 1.15 Cardinal Walter, 1.50 Merry King, 2.25 Houblon Des Obeaux, 3.00 Mr Mole, 3.35 LIGHTENTERTAINMENT (NAP), 4.10 King's Palace, 4.40 Wishing And Hoping.

UTTOXETER: 1.40 Ustica, 2.15 John Louis, 2.50 Dry Your Eyes, 3.25 Ringa Bay, 4.00 Lord Navits, 4.30 Robbie Rabbit.

WARWICK: 1.00 Nightline, 1.35 Cogry, 2.05 Top Gamble, 2.40 Glens Melody, 3.15 Dawson City, 3.50 Ohio Gold, 4.25 Smart Motive.

WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.45 Stamp Duty, 6.15 Heho, 6.45 Ortac Rock, 7.15 St Paul's Square, 7.45 Elle Shade, 8.15 Innoko, 8.45 Matraash, 9.15 Mr Soprano.

DOUBLE: Lightentertainment and Houblon Des Obeaux.


EXETER: 1.25 Sir Ivan, 1.55 WAR SOUND (NAP), 2.25 Southfield Royale, 2.55 Burton Port, 3.25 Fingal Bay, 4.00 Melodic Rendezvous, 4.30 Royal Salute.

LEOPARDSTOWN: 1.15 Vercingetorix, 1.45 Tri Na Ceile, 2.15 Alvisio Ville, 2.45 Valseur Lido, 3.15 Pulled Mussel, 3.50 Carlingford Lough, 4.20 Prince De Beauchene, 4.50 Potters Point.

SOUTHWELL: 1.35 Exclusive Contract, 2.05 Out Of Aces, 2.35 Arctic Lynx, 3.05 Heavens Eyes, 3.35 Starfield, 4.10 River Of Dreams, 4.40 Bognor.

DOUBLE: War Sound and Southfield Royale.