The weather is starting to turn, the nights are drawing in and I’m spending a lot of time with my head in a sales catalogue – the autumn must be here.
Its arrival also signals the return to having an interest in the jumps racing, which largely passes me by in the summer months. And with the domestic action on Sunday coming from Kelso and Uttoxeter I’ve had a quick spin through to see if I can find some races to hone in on.
Kelso’s 4.25, a £40,000 contest which you can watch live on Racing UK, will have to be renamed the Simply Ned Handicap Chase should Nicky Richard’s charge win the race again as his record in the four previous renewals reads 1122 and he’s back to regain his crown at the age of 11 this afternoon.
Clearly he will have been targeted at this race and he must have a solid chance, for all that his rating of 158 leaves limited room for manoeuvre.
Green Zone is one I considered putting up in the last as he usually holds his form well once he’s found it and remains well handicapped on his best efforts despite a 6lb rise for his last time out win at Perth – a track where he boasts an excellent record.
At Uttoxeter, Lunar Flow is bidding to maintain his unblemished 3-3 record at the track by taking the handicap chase at 2.30 for the second year in succession and the slight ease in conditions will have enhanced his chance, while he has form fresh and comes from a stable that often have their runners fit and firing off a break.
However, after plenty of umming and ahhing about whether or not to side with him I decided it’s Arc day and all eyes are on France.
The big race is due off at 3.05 and I fully expect the Enable to be very hard to beat.
She does not arrive after a season of domination, as she did before winning this race last term, but she looked in great form when winning the September Stakes in decisive fashion from the smart Crystal Ocean on her belated return.
Enable probably need to step up on that form but we know what she’s capable of and that level is something her rivals can only aspire to at this stage.
You could take her absence for much of the season as a positive in the sense that she now arrives here as a filly who is fresh for the time of year and the draw has been kind to her and I’m almost tempted to back her at anything that’s odds against.
However, there’s better value elsewhere on the card and I’m sticking to just the two selections from Paris Longchamp.
Our experts put Boitron under the microscope
There’s no doubt that Anodor is a promising colt and he looked smart in winning here last time.
However, he did have the run of the race that day and in Boitron he comes up against a higher class of opponent than previously.
Richard Hannon’s charge also boasts an unbeaten record and having put up a big performance to score at Newbury on his debut, when powering away from a subsequent dual winner, he has not looked back.
At Doncaster, he did well to run down an enterprisingly ridden rival before impressing again when clocking a fast time in a Newbury Listed event on his most recent outing.
A powerful galloper, he looks sure to progress again for the step up to a mile today and in what doesn’t look a deep race he looks a value bet at 5-1.
James Willoughby and Nick Lightfoot give their verdict on the Prix Du Rothschild
Connections of With You have previous in this race as her full sister We Are landed this prize back in 2014.
Yesterday’s Prix Du Cadran winner Call The Wind is also from the same family and the beautifully bred With You, already a Group 1 winner, looks the one to beat.
She was brilliant when tearing away with the Prix Du Rothschild at Deauville in July and followed that up with an excellent third in the Jacques Les Marois when beaten only by the outstanding Alpha Centauri and next time out Prix Du Moulin winner Recoletos.
Her previous starts this season had been a narrow defeat behind another top-notch filly in Laurens and a close up fifth behind Karl Burke’s star in the Prix De Diane so the return to this trip is unlikely to be a problem, and if anything will suit.
Strong at the line over a mile the past twice and mindful of the stamina in her pedigree, this should be her optimum trip.