Boxing Day ITV racing tips: Best bets for Kempton and Wetherby

There's a cracking day's racing on Boxing Day at Kempton and Wetherby, and the Planet Sport tipsters have a hot selection for each of the five live races on ITV this December 26.

There's four Grade 1s to feast upon this Monday, as the rearranged Long Walk Hurdle (1245), the Kauto Star Novices Chase (1320), the Christmas Hurdle (1355) and the showpiece King George VI (1430) will all be settled at Kempton.

There's also some Grade 3 action from Wetherby in the form of the highly popular Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase (1335).

First up a quick canter through our top tips for the day, and you can get more information as to why we've selected these horses further down the page.

Don't forget to check out the racecards, results and live odds in the Planet Sport racing live centre.

Boxing Day selections:

12:45 (Kempton) - Champ

13:20 (Kempton) - McFabulous

13:35 (Wetherby) - Into Overdrive

13:55 (Kempton) - Constitution Hill

14:30 (Kempton) - L’Homme Presse

12:45 (Kempton) Long Walk Hurdle - Champ

The rescheduled Ladbrokes Long Walk Hurdle is an unexpected treat for Boxing Day punters after being saved from the abandoned fixture at Ascot.

The change of venue could have an impact, with the emphasis likely to be less on stamina than would have been the case, and that may favour Champ in his latest clash with Paisley Park.

There was little to choose between the familiar foes at the end of a pulsating Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury last month, with Champ holding on by a diminishing neck.

It is once again difficult to split them, but slight preference is for Champ on this occasion.

13:20 (Kempton) Kauto Star Novices' Chase - McFabulous

McFabulous gets the nod in the Ladbrokes Kauto Star Novices’ Chase.

He impressed in beating the reopposing Thyme Hill and Mortlach in a Newbury Grade Two last time, with an odds-on defeat on his chasing bow now a distant memory.

13:35 (Wetherby) Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase - Into Overdrive

The William Hill Rowland Meyrick Handicap Chase is the feature event at Wetherby and the vote goes to Mark Walford’s Into Overdrive.

The Court Cave gelding completed a four-timer here in October before giving L’Homme Presse a run for his money at Newcastle, albeit in receipt of lumps of weight.

The handicapper has raised his mark a further 4lb to a career-high of 142, but Into Overdrive should nevertheless go close on his return to West Yorkshire.

13:55 (Kempton) Christmas Hurdle - Constitution Hill

The Ladbrokes Christmas Hurdle is far less intriguing from a punting point of view, with National Hunt racing’s pre-eminent star Constitution Hill impossible to oppose.

His electrifying change of gear was in full view when he powered clear of Champion Hurdle and Christmas Hurdle-winning stablemate Epatante in the Fighting Fifth at Newcastle last month and given she again appears his biggest threat, anything other than another dominant performance will be disappointing.

14:30 (Kempton) King George VI Chase - L’Homme Presse

L’Homme Presse can come of age with victory in the Ladbrokes King George VI Chase at Kempton.

A small but select field will go to post for the Boxing Day highlight, with champion trainer Paul Nicholls possessing a strong hand as he bids to add to his record King George haul of 12 victories.

As the choice of stable jockey Harry Cobden, Bravemansgame appears the number one hope for Ditcheat, with this race pencilled in as his main objective since his brilliant display in the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase on the same card 12 months ago.

The seven-year-old looked good in winning the Charlie Hall at Wetherby on his reappearance, but what that form is worth is open to question, and at the current odds Bravemansgame looks opposable.

His stablemate Hitman is on an upward curve and impressed at Haydock last month, but needs to take another big step forward, while Nicholls’ 2020 King George hero Frodon is not the force he once was.

Henry de Bromhead’s Envoi Allen, who once looked unbeatable, proved he is not a busted flush with victory in the Ladbrokes Champion Chase at Down Royal last month, but even connections have admitted he has a breathing issue that cannot be completely rectified and he is hard to rely on as a result.

With all that in mind, L’Homme Presse – who is officially 5lb clear on official ratings – looks the most solid betting proposition for Venetia Williams and Charlie Deutsch.

In seven starts over fences, the French import has met with defeat just once and as that came at Aintree at the end of a hard novice campaign, it is easily excused.

L’Homme Presse is better judged on his previous triumph at the Cheltenham Festival and his comeback success under a huge weight in the Rehearsal Chase at Newcastle a month ago.

His accurate jumping could prove to be a real weapon on a speed track like Kempton and he can prove himself a genuine Gold Cup contender with victory in one of the sport’s most prestigious events.

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