Saturday ITV Racing Tips: Best bets for Sandown and Wincanton

ITV are showing eight races live on Saturday - four each from Sandown and Wincanton - and we've got them all nicely covered with the latest odds, racecards and tips - not to mention some free bets!

Let's begin with those free bets which could make the difference between winning and losing and work like this..

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

Armed with that concession you can bet on our selections - or pick your own - with perhaps a little more confidence, and you can click on the horse's names below to head straight to Planet Sport Bet and place your bets.

Selections:

Inferno Sacree (13.30 Wincanton)

Monsieur Lecoq (13.50 Sandown)

Another Crick (14.05 Wincanton)

Constitution Hill - Shallwehaveonemore forecast (14.25 Sandown)

Crossing The Bar (14.40 Wincanton)

Wandrin Star / Prime Venture each-way (15.00 Sandown)

Mont Des Avaloirs (15.15 Wincanton)

Hermes Boy / Mack The Man if non-runner (15.35 Sandown)

13.30 Wincanton - Inferno Sacree

Understandably the form horses dominate the market for this 2m handicap hurdle (click for racecard) and they are headed by Planned Paradise, who stepped up on his maiden form when making all at Newcastle last time, with the switch to positive tactics clearly suiting him.

Another bold bid is on the cards and it's likely that Midnight Callisto will be on the premises too as she has been rounding nicely into form, putting up her best effort when a length second at Taunton last time under today's conditional rider, and is sporting first-time cheek-pieces.

But there is one runner lurking at the bottom of the handicap with the potential to improve on what he's shown so far and belie his double-figure price tag, that being Nigel Hawke's Inferno Sacree.

The only four-year-old in the line up and still a juvenile, he'd clearly been showing something at home prior to his debut at Hexham in June as he was well supported, but he ran as if something was amiss and pulled up.

He got no further than the first flight on his second run here but there was more encouragement to be taken from his subsequent fourth at Ludlow where his jockey reported he ran green, and he can be excused his latest distant fifth at Fontwell in filthy conditions.

Out of an unraced half-sister to the top class Sprinter Sacre, he's got the pedigree to do well at the winter game and while he's still learning his trade, we're prepared to roll the dice on him.

13.50 Sandown - Monsieur Lecoq

The form of Gunsight Ridge's second behind L'Homme Presse now looks even better after the winner followed up in a Grade 2 at Cheltenham on New Year's Day, and it's no surprise that he's favourite for this 2m handicap chase.

However, he's a point winner who looks in need of further and his stable form - just 1-33 in the last fortnight - is another concern, so we can let him win at odds of around 6/4.

Instead, we'll take a chance on Jane Williams' Monsieur Lecoq bouncing back to top form after a couple of so-so efforts, the latest of those over hurdles and over fences at Ascot prior to that, when the good ground was against him.

He has always looked a horse who relishes testing ground - his only chase win to date came on heavy - and is now undeniably well handicapped on a mark of 128 with Chester Williams claiming 3lb off his back.

A very smart handicap hurdler who reached a peak of 151 in that sphere, he was only beaten a head in a quality 2m1f handicap chase at Ascot (soft) last October off a 4lb higher perch than today's.

All in all, he's got a better chance than his odds would suggest.

14.05 Wincanton - Another Crick

Belle De Manech was an easy winner over fences here 13 days ago and is now 2-3 at the track, so she's entitled to go well again for all she has a 10lb rise to cope with.

Next in the betting is Desque De L'Isle and while he's twice come up short off a higher mark for winning at Ffos Las on his seasonal return, he will find today's softer conditions more to his liking.

However, this is a wide open 2m handicap chase with all of the ten runners holding chances and we're drawn to Another Crick, who is a useful chaser at his best and has become well handicapped again after winning back-to-back races in early 2019.

He had wind surgery after pulling up at Ascot in March of last year and last month's reappearance third (moved well until tiring) over hurdles at Leicester will have teed him up nicely for a return to fences off a mark of 122, which is 12lb lower than his peak rating.

He's another whose odds don't reflect his chances and we're happy to take a chance on him.

14.25 Sandown (Tolworth Hurdle) - Constitution Hill

While his rivals can boast plenty of winning form amongst them, we're not going to look beyond Nicky Henderson's Constitution Hill for this Grade 1 2m hurdle as he's potentially head and shoulders above the rest.

Bought for £120,000 after finishing second in his only Irish point, he could not have been more impressive when making a winning debut over today's course and distance last month, with his stamina really kicking in close home.

He's a chaser for the future but there are more races to be won with him over hurdles first and he could be top class in this sphere - Planet Sport Bet are quoting him at 7/2 behind stablemate Jonbon (2/1) for the Supreme Novices' Hurdle.

Sadly he's no betting proposition at today's odds of around 1/3, so forecast backers are pointed towards Gary Moore's Shallwehaveonemore, who ran too free when second at Ascot on his hurdles debut (third won since) and should be suited by the likely strong gallop.

14.40 Wincanton - Crossing The Bar

Philip Hobb's Crossing The Bar jumped out as a potential winner of this 2m5f handicap hurdle before betting opened and while we would have liked bigger than the current best price of 9/2, we're not going to desert him.

It's true he lacks the experience of his rivals after just two starts - the only real negative - but he had a touch of class about him on the Flat - he was rated as high as 84 when with Sir Michael Stoute - and has made a most promising start to his new career over hurdles after changing hands for 60,000gns in the summer.

As a winner over 1m6f on the level, he was always going to need a trip over hurdles and so it proved when stepped up to 2m4f on his most recent outing at Ffos Las in December, staying on well on the run-in to finish third.

Today's slightly longer trip won't harm his chances then and we'll be amazed if he isn't rated a good deal higher than his current mark of 108 before too long.

Apple Rock, who is back on his last winning mark and will be suited by the likely testing conditions, may give the selection most to do.

15.00 Sandown - Wandrin Star

Aso has achieved so much more than the rest of his 12 rivals in this Veterans' Final, including finishing second in the 2019 Ryanair behind Frodon, and he's no back number at the age of 12 judging by last month's second in a qualifier for the series at Haydock, where he again showed his appreciation of testing ground.

That he has top weight of 11st 12lb to shoulder, meaning he's giving upwards of 10lb to his rivals, and has done most of his winning going left-handed are a couple of negatives to consider, but he absolutely should be favourite with his stable in fine form and regular pilot Charlie Deutsch up top.

But what of the other golden oldies in the line-up?

Final Nudge, the joint oldest in the line-up at 13, came back to winning form at Warwick last time and will have the services of Paddy Brennan, while Rolling Dylan is back with Philip Hobbs after a spell contesting points and has finished runner-up the last twice.

Wandrin Star can boast a convincing win over track and trip on his return to action after a break in November, showing the benefit of a second wind operation.

Kim Bailey's now 11-year-old has always gone well fresh and has been given plenty of time to get over that effort, so it wouldn't surprise to see him close under David Bass as he clearly stays and jumps these big fences well.

We'll put him up as a value alternative to Aso and also give a favourable mention to relative outsider Prime Venture, who is a strong stayer in these conditions - as shown by two excellent placed efforts in the Welsh National - and is running off his lowest ever chase mark. He's one for each-way backers.

15.15 Wincanton - Mont Des Avaloirs

Stolen Silver will find this 2m4f handicap chase easier than the Sandown Grade 1 he contested last time and is sure to attract plenty of support, but a further 5lb rise to a harsh-looking mark of 145 leaves him with top weight.

Killer Clown is better than his finishing position of sixth at Newbury last time would suggest as he was still in there pitching when making a complete hash of the second-last.

He is tempting but we've a feeling that Paul Nicholls might have Mont Des Avaloirs ready to rock and roll on his return to action after 455 days off, especially given he has gone well fresh in the past.

Paul Nicholls loves having winners at Wincanton

A smart hurdler at his best who finished seventh in the 2019 Betfair Hurdle, he's yet to reach similar heights over fences, although his fourth (seven and a half lengths adrift) behind Champ in a Grade 2 novice was a fair effort and he would have gone close to winning at Chepstow when last seen out in October 2020 but for coming to grief.

He's a sound jumper in the main and there is surely a good handicap in him off his current mark, so why not today at a track where his stable loves having winners and with Bryony Frost up?

15.35 Sandown - Hermes Boy

Natural History has become well handicapped and has another 2m handicap hurdle like today's in him, while Mack The Man still looks well treated having gone up just 3lb for wining at Exeter last time, just doing enough on that occasion.

However, it's hard to get away from the claims of Hermes Boy, a stablemate of Monsieur Lecoq, and he looks a good bet to hopefully complete a double for the stable.

The joint-youngest at five of the eight runners for this 2m handicap hurdle, he's far from fully exposed after just three hurdle starts and has built on his debut second behind the now 138-rated I Like To Move It at Worcester on October, when given a very sympathetic ride and tending to hang right.

That trait was again in evidence on his subsequent start at Bangor, where he bumped into the very useful Richmond Lake, and he duly got off the mark when racing the other way around at Exeter (2m), keeping on nicely once headed to win going away.

The third horse home that day, Dubrovnik Harry, won by 25 lengths when returned to the same track on New Year's Day to give the form a major boost.

Given he has bags of scope for further improvement, a 5lb rise is unlikely to stop him going in again, providing the ground doesn't deteriorate too much - see trainer quote below.

She said: "I'm not happy about the ground at all for him and he might not run. I'm concerned about the amount of rain forecast and the prospect of heavy ground. He's not handled that type of ground before and he's not a very old horse. If it's soft ground I'd be really positive, but heavy makes me anxious."

Should he not run, we'll switch our allegiance to Mack The Man, who won't mind what the weather throws at him and has some solid form at the track, including third place in last season's Imperial Cup.

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