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The Mandarin’s Kempton Racecard for Saturday 24th February 2024

The Mandarin’s Kempton Racecard for Saturday 24th February 2024

Coral Racing Club Handicap Hurdle 1.15
Sea Invasion
Chris Gordon landed this race last year and has every chance of doubling up with Sea Invasion. He ran well in a strong Class 2 Maiden Hurdle here on Boxing Day to finish fourth, form that has been well franked with the second and third going in since, and this step up in trip shouldn’t see him beaten for pace. Sea Invasion lines up on a workable mark, and if coping with the soft ground should be right in the mix

Coral Adonis Juvenile Hurdle (Grade 2) 1.50
Kalif Du Berlais
Course and distance winner Kalif Du Berlais is sure to be all the rage for the first of the Graded races on Kempton’s card. This Masked Marvel gelding led from the front on his stable debut to win that Class 2 contest by over 7 lengths, and can only come on for that racing experience. He should be fine on this going, and looks the one to beat for Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls, with Givemefive the one to follow him home for Harry Derham

Coral Pendil Novices’ Chase (Grade 2) 2.27
Tahmuras (nap)
The winner of the Grade 1 Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown Park in January of last year has already scored once this season in his Novice Chasing campaign. That win at Aintree on soft ground suggests he’ll be suited by Kempton Park’s flattish track, and with Paul Nicholls’ record in this race standing up to scrutiny, Tahmuras looks the one to follow. Gary Moore’s Le Patron rates the main danger, having landed the Henry VIII in December, but was a bit out of sorts returned to Sandown Park for the Scilly Isles three weeks ago, so questions remain. Tahmuras to continue to progress and land this Grade 2

Coral Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2) 3.00
Secret Squirrel (nb)
Hughie Morrison has a smart one in his yard with Secret Squirrel. Having given one of Cheltenham’s top hopes, Jeriko Du Reponet a real race at Newbury in December, he then just failed to reel in odds-on favourite Fire Flyer in a hot contest at Taunton earlier this month. Sam Thomas’s Lump Sum and Ben Pauling’s Fiercely Proud are obvious dangers and should be in the mix, but with course form here in a Maiden back in November, Secret Squirrel has every chance, with JJ Burke on the reins adding to the appeal

Coral Trophy Handicap Chase (Premier Handicap) 3.37
Blackjack Magic
Anthoney Honeyball’s Blackjack Magic has an outstanding chance of returning to winning ways in this valuable Premier Handicap. He was looking all the way the winner when making a late error at Sandown Park three weeks ago, relegating him to fifth, but with a cleaner round of fencing on Kempton’s flatter track should be seen in a better light. More than capable in this grade, and sure to go close

Play Coral Racing-Super-Series For Free Handicap Chase 4.10
Pepe Le Moko
With a resurgent Quel Destin likely to head to Chepstow, the ready preference is for Jane Williams’s Pepe Le Moko. He won over course and distance here last month, and although this is another step up the ladder, he’s one going the right way and can go in again. Up in the weights, but progressive enough to get the nudge in this deeper contest

Coral We’re Here For It Open National Hunt Flat Race 4.45
Roman Roy
It may pay to side with Roman Roy for the closer, with his runners-up spot at Wincanton looking solid form. There’s plenty of debutantes lining up, so racing experience should count for plenty and the ground should hold no terrors for him, being a Blue Bresil gelding. Roman Roy to finish off a good day for Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden

The Mandarin

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