Saturday Live ITV Racing Tips: Best bets for Doncaster, Chester and Leopardstown

The St Leger and Irish Champion Stakes, which are both being shown live on ITV on Saturday come under the scrutiny of Planet Sport experts, along with the remaining five televised races.

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1.45 Doncaster - Premier Power (each-way)

2.00 Chester - Alignak

2.20 Doncaster - Reach For the Moon

2.35 Chester - Supakalanistic (each-way)

2.45 Leopardstown - St Mark's Basilica

3.00 Doncaster - Laneqash

3.35 Doncaster - Interpretation (each-way)

1.45 Doncaster - Premier Power

You can give a chance to plenty in this prestigious handicap run over five and a half furlongs, and the first one we stopped at was Jawaal.

A strong travelling sort who won back to back handicaps over the bare minimum here in the summer, he needs to be delivered as late as possible, only because he stops when hitting the front.

If things do go his way, and James Doyle is the man for the job, he will be there at the finish, but there's one at a bigger price that makes more appeal.

Premier Power hardly looks like a winner in waiting given his form figures of '87' this season, but he was entitled to need the run on his latest start at Newmarket following a break and having been gelded in the meantime.

That he showed plenty of pace before weakening on the climb to the line, provides plenty of encouragement for Saturday's test and he's far from exposed as a sprinter after just seven career starts.

He's won a couple of those and was beaten only a short head off a 2lb higher mark than today's at Kempton last December, when he looked certain to score inside the last furlong.

All those races were over 6f, yet he gives the impression this slightly shorter trip could be perfect for him, and the booking of Oisin Murphy seals the bet, with a saver on Jaweel also advised.

2.00 Chester - Alignak

On the ratings at least this should be between last year's winner Alignak, who is making his seasonal reappearance but won first time up last year, and Ebor third Alounak.

Both rated 110, they have upwards of 8lb in hand over their rivals and neither will mind if the going turns soft, which is likely given the forecast.

Time to get off the fence and we'll give the vote to Alignak, on account of the fact Sir Michael Stoute's charge has fewer miles on the clock and appeared to relish this tight track when justifying favouritism 12 months ago.

Alignak relishes the tight turns of Chester
Alignak relishes the tight turns of Chester

Richard Kingscote, who has a healthy strike rate for the stable of 18% (16-87 this season), will do the steering.

Doncaster 2.20 - Reach For The Moon

This has cut up to just four runners with the presence of Reach For The Moon and Lusail, arguably two of the best juveniles seen out so far this season, scaring off any other entrants at the declaration stage.

There's little between the pair on official ratings but Reach For The Moon is getting 3lb from his penalised rival, and he was most impressive when landing the odds in the Group 3 Solario Stakes last time out.

That's a race his trainer John Gosden often runs his best juvenile - think Kingman and Too Darn Hot - and his son of Sea The Stars did it in the style of a potential top-notcher, with Frankie Dettori not having to resort to whip at any stage.

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Sadly he's no real betting proposition at the likely odds-on.

2.35 Chester - Supakalanistic

Likely favourite Arrow Of Gold was flattered to finish so close to an easy winner at Thirsk last time, albeit he's entitled to come on for that run having been off since finishing lame at Hamilton in July.

Lightly raced after just three starts, he makes more appeal than some of these which have a much more exposed look about them and find it hard to win.

But we're going to be to roll the dice here and take a chance on Nigel Twiston-Davies' Supakalanistic at much bigger odds.

The eight-year-old is better known as a hurdler and will no doubt be jumping obstacles again before too long, but he's run well on the level the last twice, including when landing a Chepstow maiden last September.

Given he's now rated 126 over hurdles, he's potentially nicely treated here off a mark of 87 - the difference between disciplines should be 35lb as a rough guide - and he'll strip fitter for his run out at Kempton last month over an woefully inadequate mile.

Reported to have had wind surgery since, it all adds up to making him a tempting bet at a double-figure price.

2.45 Leopardstown - St Mark's Basilica

Just the four runners for this Group 1 prize but what a select bunch they are, with St Mark's Basilica, who was completing a four-timer at the highest level in Sandown's Eclipse, taking on 2000 Guineas winner Poetic Flare and Tarnawa, the world's top rated filly.

It's a race we could easily watch and savour but this is a betting piece and the selection simply has to be St Mark's Basilica over this 1m2f trip.

St Mark's Basilica won a high-class renewal of the Eclipse
St Mark's Basilica won a high-class renewal of the Eclipse

It suits him ideally, whereas Breeders' Cup heroine Tarnawa is arguably better over 1m4f, for all that she has won a Group 1 over shorter, while Poetic Flare is stepping up from a mile and needs to prove his stamina.

Of course a tactical affair is possible and that might even things out a little, but there's the going to consider too with rain in the forecast, and that won't hinder Aidan O'Brien's stable star one bit.

3.00 Doncaster - Laneqash

Roger Varian's Laneqash appeared to relish fast ground when chasing home Sacred in a Group 2 at Newbury, a cracking effort given that he'd been off since October of last year, when finishing stone last in the Horris Hill run on heavy.

Should the ground stay on the fast side he'd be a confident selection here, but there's thundery rain in the forecast and any ease in conditions would inconvenience his main market rival Danyah less.

Owen Burrows' charge too has looked at home on fast ground this season, looking better than ever in his two handicap starts, including when just getting the verdict at Ascot last time, but he does have winning form on soft too.

As they're calling the ground "good to firm" at the time of writing, we'll put up Laneqash here as the one to back, especially as he's getting 4lb from his main rival, but we'd jump ship should conditions go against him.

3.35 Doncaster - Interpretation

We've discussed this race at more length elsewhere on this site, coming out in favour of Aidan O'Brien's Interpretation as a solid each-way alternative to odds-on favourite Hurricane Lane, and you can read our reasons why here.

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