Saturday ITV Racing Tips: Best bets for Haydock, Kempton and Ascot

The ITV cameras are rolling at three meetings on Saturday September 4 and Planet Sport experts are on hand with a selection for each of the eight televised races.

Selections:

1.45 Haydock - Artistic Rifles

2.05 Kempton - Wings Of War

2.20 Haydock - Valley Forge

2.40 Kempton - Hukum

2.55 Haydock - Noble Masquerade

3.10 Ascot - Candleford

3.30 Haydock - Supremacy each-way

3.45 Ascot - Documenting

Even better, punters looking to back any of our selections can do so safe in the knowledge there's a tasty free bet offer should the horse they back just fails. Here's the rub...

Get up to £20 back as a free bet if your horse places second and is beaten by a neck or less - applies to ALL LIVE ITV RACES!

That concession came in handy last Saturday when all four of the televised races from Goodwood involved close finishes - backers of Daneh, Escobar, Nagano and Benbatl would have enjoyed free bets to compensate for narrow defeats.

1.45 Haydock - Artistic Rifles

Just the five runners and it should be between Lord Glitters and My Oberon, who are well clear of the remaining trio on official ratings.

The pair clashed at York last month, when they finished second and fifth (Bell Rock in fourth) respectively behind Real World.

As My Oberon was entitled to need that run more and got whacked over the head by a rival jockey's whip close home, he could close the gap here. He's also sporting first-time blinkers.

But both the principals would prefer a bit further than the mile they race over here, especially as the ground will be riding fast, and a chance is taken on rank outsider Artistic Rifles.

Ed Bethell's charge adores these conditions and has taken his form to a new level this season, winning three times, all handicaps admittedly.

He has plenty to find on the ratings but a win for this bang miler wouldn't be a huge surprise, especially if there is no pace on.

At double-figure odds we don't have to have much on to find out.

2.05 Kempton - Wings Of War

Nymphadora has been highly tried since winning at York in May and there was no disgrace in her latest defeat in a Group 2 back on the Knavesmire.

However, she's a little more exposed after five starts than her rivals and the feeling is that one of them will improve past her.

A couple of those are proven on an all-weather surface, the unbeaten pair of Scott's Grace and Hierarchy, but preference is for Clive Cox's Wings Of War, who ran a blinder to finish third in a hot sales race at the Ebor meeting.

A ready winner at Nottingham previously (third has won since), he shapes as if there is more to come and hails from a stable that excels with juveniles and enjoyed a treble last Saturday.

A Group 1 entry later in the season might not look so optimistic after this contest and he's a backable price too.

2.20 Haydock - Valley Forge

Andrew Balding's Valley Forge has been raised 7lb for his success in the prestigious Melrose at York, in which he put any number of promising middle-distance stayers to the sword and without having to give maximum effort.

A gorgeous looking horse with further improvement in him after just five starts, he's taken to shrug off that rise, with his stamina for this 1m6f trip and ability to act on fast ground - winner on such a surface at Ffos Las - proven.

Andrew Balding can be on the mark with Valley Forge
Andrew Balding can be on the mark with Valley Forge

His main danger according to the betting is Vino Victrix, who followed up his Sandown success (form has worked out well) by justifying favouritism on the all-weather at Kempton.

However, he might not want the ground as fast as it's likely to be here and a bigger threat to the Andrew Balding-trained selection may come from Praiano, who didn't enjoy the best of runs when fourth at Sandown last time out.

2.40 Kempton - Hukum

Hamish, who was all the rage ante post for the Ebor only to be withdrawn on the day of the race on account of fast ground, is making his belated seasonal reappearance in this Group 3 contest.

However, this is almost certainly being used as a warm up ahead of even bigger targets in the autumn - he has an entry in the Group 1 Long Distance Cup - and he'll surely struggle to cope with the race-fit (and superior) Hukum.

Owen Burrows' gelding has won both his starts since connections added a tongue-tie and following a fine third in the Hardwicke Stakes behind Wonderful Tonight.

On the crest of a wave at present and proven on an artificial surface - won here as a novice - he should justify odds-on favouritism.

2.55 Haydock - Noble Masquerade

The vast majority of the 12 runner field for this prestigious 1m6f handicap are exposed sorts who have become hard to win with, and several would prefer some ease in the ground (unlikely).

There a couple of notable exceptions in top weight Global Storm, who looked progressive prior to finishing down the field in the Ebor (no obvious excuse), and Noble Masquerade, who resides at the bottom of the weights and has won two of his last three starts since being fitted with blinkers.

While both of those successes were over shorter trips than today's, he was rallying close home over 1m4f at Sandown two starts back, only going down by a length at the line, and that provides some hope that he will stay this far.

He'll likely get a patient ride from Hollie Doyle and getting weight all round - a whopping 22lb from Global Storm, who is perhaps worth a saver nonetheless - he might just prove good enough on fast ground that holds no fears.

Hollie Doyle gets the leg up on the fancied Noble Masquerade
Hollie Doyle gets the leg up on the fancied Noble Masquerade

3.10 Ascot - Candleford

Sir Michael Stoute's Wahraan looks a worthy favourite for this 1m4f handicap given his progressive profile, and he's just the type of improving three-year-old his trainer excels with.

Chasing a hat-trick at York last time after easy wins at Pontefract and Newmarket, he didn't have the racing room to show his true worth and should have finished closer than fifth.

He does have to prove his stamina over this longer trip, though, and while his pedigree is encouraging in that respect - he's out of an unraced sister to Oaks winner Was - he's plenty short enough at the current odds.

Instead, we'll take a chance on William Haggas' Candleford now that he is making his handicap debut off a potentially lenient mark 85, with connections also claiming 5lb off his back

A few of those who finished ahead of him in good novices are rated much higher - most notably surprise Derby runner-up Mojo Star - and the horse he beat easily at Windsor last time (1m2f) has gone one better since to frank the form.

He should have no problem with today's longer trip given how strong he was at the line at the Berkshire venue, and his apprentice rider will be full of confidence after booting home a double for the stable recently.

He's preferred to stablemate Chalk Stream (respected nonetheless) and Alfaadhel, who represents last year's winning stable but may have stamina limitations.

3.30 Haydock - Starman

Punters are being asked to take odds-on about Starman and that's not surprising as Ed Walker's colt is a cut above today's rivals on the form of his Duke Of York and July Cup successes over today's 6f, with the prevailing fast ground very much in his favour too.

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He can be excused a defeat on his most recent start in a French Group 1 on account of a much slower surface and an extra half furlong, which stretched his stamina to the limit, and he'll have his ideal conditions here with no rain in the forecast.

That's bad news for connections of second favourite Creative Force, who has racked up four wins and a placed effort from his five starts this term, but is definitely more effective with some cut.

Of the rest, Art Power is better than his finishing effort over 5f at Goodwood last time, while Chil Chil showed enough when fifth in the Nunthorpe to suggest he might be involved in the fight for places.

But the really interesting one at double-figure odds is last season's Middle Park winner Supremacy, who has failed to live up to that form in two starts this term, including when 15 of the 19 runners in the July Cup.

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That his trainer Clive Cox is persevering with him at this level tells you he must still be showing plenty at home, and the vibes coming out of his stable have certainly been positive of late.

We'll put him up as an each-way alternate to the favourite, who looks by far the most likely winner.

3.45 Ascot - Documenting

For what is a wide open handicap a case can be made for Mystery Smiles, who has been gelded since missing the break badly at Ascot last time and had run in the 2000 Guineas previously, and Ripp Orf, who is well treated if retaining any of his old ability.

But a safer bet looks to be Kevin Frost's Documenting following the gelding's return to form last time, when a close up third at Doncaster and clear of the rest.

Clearly he's no back number at the age of eight and his turf handicap mark of 101 is now 6lb lower than his last winning one.

That success was one of three last season - he also won this race off today's mark - and his small dual purpose yard has been amongst the winners of late, so there's lots to like about his chances.

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