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Dark Horses 28th March

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2:05 Hexham – Glittering Love

It is unusual to see a 10-year-old competing in a novice hurdle at any time of year, but this does look to be a shrewd piece of placement by Nicky Richards with GLITTERING LOVE. The yard is currently operating at a 27% strike rate and although this 10-year-old does have a record of 0-7 over hurdles, he has been a consistent winner over fences, and this is easily the weakest hurdle race that he has contested. He has a chase rating of 113 and was a winner at Carlisle in December on that mark, which in a race as weak as this it does make him of interest. If he can run to his rating, that could well be enough to win this. He stays well and has plenty of form on galloping tracks, with form of 1,2,3 in his 3 starts over fences at Hexham itself. 

4:20 Hexham – Bella Union

John McConnell is very adept at placing his horses when he travels across from Ireland, with a 22% strike rate in the UK this season and 42% of his horses making the frame. BELLA UNION is a son of Mahler and a half-brother to 3 winners (2 won bumpers) including Go Another One, who has won 13 races for the yard. He finished 4th on his debut at Carlisle, beaten 3-lengths by Maximillian (Donald McCain) who has won again in the interim. Having travelled alongside the eventual winner throughout most of that race, he was driven to lead with 2-furlongs to run and although he tired in the closing stages, he kept on nicely. With the benefit of that run, he should improve and looks to have been found a very winnable opportunity.

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