Saturday 25 November 2017

Zepnove to benefit from step up in trip

Tomorrow's jumps card at Southwell is largely low-quality fare, with the opening three-mile handicap chase one of the more competitive events on offer.

Of the 11 runners, six bring placed form to the table. Off a light weight, Allterrain is certainly of interest having recaptured a reasonable standard of performance when second here over flights last month.

Ginger's Lad is another to consider on the back of his runner-up finish here at a subsequent meeting three weeks ago, but slight preference is for the former Jimmy Coogan-trained Zepnove. Representing an in-form Neil King stable now, Zepnove was a dual winner over flights before mixing it over hurdles and fences this year.

While she doesn't look nearly as interested over the smaller obstacles anymore, each of her three chasing starts has yielded place money.

On her most recent outing at Stratford on Thursday, she kept on well to be third in a first-time visor.

That was a fair handicap for the time of year, so it would be no surprise to see Zepnove go close again now that she steps up to three miles. At just five years of age, she remains open to improvement.

Also fancied at the Nottinghamshire venue is Ashammar in the novice chase under Denis O'Regan. The likes of Dunowen Point and Helium bring recent form into this, but Ashammar may have a touch more quality if things fall his way.

A runaway winner of a novice hurdle at Sedgefield in September, mistakes cost him dearly in his two initial efforts over fences. However, as a keen runner, racing at this time of year may suit better and it is significant that Paul Webber has opted to run him for the first time since January.

Irish Independent

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