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Chepstow best bet: Harry Cobden's only ride of day brings champion jockey showdown with Sean Bowen

If ever a race were destined to be dominated by the market leaders, then this mares’ hurdle at Chepstow appears to be it, with champion jockey rivals Harry Cobden and Sean Bowen going head to head.

14:45 Chepstow: Core Hereford Mares’ ‘National Hunt’ Novices’ Hurdle (2 miles)

With six of the 11 scheduled starters currently available at triple-digit odds, we can either safely discount them or else spend the morning sharpening up our pinsticking skills.

Of the two remaining each-way options, Anthony Honeyball’s Coco Brave appears to be the better prospect after finishing a promising third of eight on hurdle debut at Exeter in January, and looking well placed to achieve at least the same at Hereford last time out, only to take a tumble at the last.

She could go well if fully recovered, although she appears to have her work cut out to split the three market leaders, of whom Miss Hunky Dory is looking to build on an encouraging last-time-out runner-up spot at Wincanton a fortnight ago, when a first-time tongue strap appeared to produce the desired effect and could well work again in this more challenging test.

All of which brings us to the two short-priced market leaders, which allows Sean Bowen and Harry Cobden to bring their champion jockey rivalry into a showdown on board a couple of strongly-fancied prospects.

WATCH: Harry Cobden reviews his Cheltenham rides on his Planet Sport Bet Blog

Bowen is aboard the current early favourite, with the lightly-raced Largy Force looking to build on a couple of runner-up spots, firstly in a pre-Christmas bumper at Catterick, and last month on hurdle debut at Hereford, where he beat all of his eight rivals with the exception of the well-supported odds-on favourite, Mighty Moth.

She has the credentials to go one better, but the same could be said for the mount of Cobden, who is travelling to the South Wales venue to team up with Love Tree for his only ride of the day.

James Owen’s four-year-old receives a useful three-pound fillies’ allowance against the older mares, and with Planet Sport bet’s racing ambassador in the saddle for the first time, connections will be looking for an improvement on her last-time-out performance at Doncaster, where she struggled to make an impact in her first taste of Listed Class 1 company.

Suggested best bet: Love Tree in the 14:45 at Chepstow

With the potential benefit of a first-time hood, this drop back to a Class 4 event should give her much better chance to rekindle the kind of form she showed when finishing runner-up in back-to-back bumpers in November, and then winning at a canter by more than seven lengths on hurdle debut just before Christmas.

Having drawn a blank from his three attempts at Exeter on Tuesday, Cobden had previously landed a tasty double with his only two rides on Monday at Southwell, while on Sunday his trip to this very venue was made worthwhile by a 7/2 winner from his only ride, which should give him good heart ahead of this similar one-race visit.   


READ MORE: Chepstow racing tips: Best bets for Thursday March 21

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