Picks From The Paddock Best Bet – Thursday 3rd January


Best Bet Of The Day

14:50 Ludlow

Reigning Champion Jockey and recent MBE Richard Johnson has a quartet of rides here at Ludlow today and arguably all four have very strong claims but the one looks the most likely to end in the winners enclosure has to the Warren Greatrex trained Little Jack. A win in his first National Hunt flat race was followed by an encouraging 3rd in a similar event after a long summer layoff. There’s no doubt the horse will strip fitter for his seasonal reappearance and as he takes to hurdling for the first time is likely to put in an improved effort against a less competitive set of rivals.

The similarly named Smackwater Jack hails from the yard of Olly Murphy who’s hit a blistering run of recent form. His horses are going great guns and the fact that top jockey Aidan Coleman (who bagged his first Grade 1 winning ride recently) has traveled to Ludlow for just this ride is very telling. The horse did well when finishing 2nd in his last run and aims to go one better here. I just hope that Richard Johnson’s mount has a bit more class and will overturn his namesake.




12:40 Ludlow

For any horse to start their national hunt career thrown in at the deep end in a Grade 2 is clearly very well thought of by connections and the Charlie Mann trained Capone did just that. The German raced import came over to take his first steps into the hurdling sphere in a top class event at Doncaster just over a fortnight ago. He failed to deliver finishing 4th of 5 runners but to go from a race like that to a class 4 hurdle is a massive drop in grade and if the yard still see as much promise in this lightly raced competitor a race of this nature should be well within his reach.

A horse that, on paper, has arguably achieved more is Dance To Paris who seems equally adept on both the flat and over obstacles. A win at Fakenham was followed by a 6th placed effort behind the promising Chica Buena. The filly subsequently switched to the all-weather to claim a victory at Lingfield on the 19th and with Richard Johnson in the saddle looks to be the most obvious contender.

Carouse and Metatron’s Cube are likely to be the best of the rest having both picked up 2nd placed finishes in their last few outings.



12:40 – Capone (WIN)*

13:15 – Clondaw Castle (WIN)

13:45 – Silver Kayf (E/W)

14:15 – Agent Memphis (WIN)

14:50 – Little Jack (WIN) – NAP

15:25 – Subway Surf (WIN)



12:55 – Katie Gale (WIN)

13:30 – Temur Khan (WIN)

14:00 – Archimedes (E/W)

14:35 – Pearl Acclaim (E/W)

15:10 – Hammer Gun (E/W)

15:45 – Ticks The Boxes (E/W)



16:10 – Originaire (WIN)

16:45 – Classic Charm (E/W)

17:20 – Holy Heart (WIN)

17:55 – Teruntum Star (E/W)

18:25 – Shamshon (WIN)

18:55 – Zorawar (E/W)

19:25 – Affair (WIN)

19:55 – Sharp Operator (E/W)

Picks From The Paddock Best Bet – Thursday 3rd January
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