It’s time for Week 8 in the Tipster Challenge! Let’s find out if Ed Nicholson from Unibet can handle the pressure of keeping the Guest team on top of the leaderboard!
Ed has been professionally involved in racing and betting for nearly 25 years, having started with Ladbrokes in 1993, and is currently Head of Racing and PR at Unibet.
He appeared as the horse racing form expert guest presenter on the very first Attheraces (ATR) live show on May 1, 2002, along with Mike Cattermole, Angus McNae, John McCririck and Emma Spencer.
Ed will be taking on SBC News, Stephen Harris from bettingexpert and Timeform. The weather forecast for Wincanton is mixed, but let’s hope the rain holds off and we get six races full of excitement.
SBC News: Antartica De Thaix
She’s likely to go off at a very short price, but you can’t really oppose Antartica de Thaix in this field.
bettingexpert: Antartica De Thaix
Has been found a great opening here under a penalty and should justify short odds with the minimum of fuss.
Timeform: Antartica De Thaix
Quickly left her hurdling debut blip behind when scoring at Taunton recently, and gets the nod to follow-up under a penalty with the drop in trip holding no fears. Biretta and hurdles debutante Sainte Ladylime are others worthy of consideration.
Unibet: Antartica De Thaix
Nicholls stable in good form last 14 days (35%), he has 44% strike race in these type of races at Wincanton (last 4 years) and Antartica De Thaix is officially rated by far the best horse in the race.
SBC News: Quite By Chance
In fine form at Wincanton, with two wins and a second place since Boxing Day.
bettingexpert: La Vaticane
Has shaped with promise on all four starts in the UK since arriving from France and hails from the Pipe yard that is now in much better form.
Timeform: La Vaticane
Worth another chance to prove herself; well treated from this sort of mark with blinkers added back from a break. Quite By Chance goes well around here and arrives at the top of his game, so is the obvious threat ahead of the lightly-raced Vic de Touzaine.
Unibet: Quite By Chance
Loves Wincanton (3/8), stable in form and jockey/trainer combination have won 10 times from 30 races this season. Stable in form too. Good priced alternative to favourite
SBC News: Pacha Du Polder
We’re backing the hype around Victoria Pendleton and hoping she rides to her first winner.
bettingexpert: Big Fella Thanks
Nearly old enough to smoke now but still retains a touch of class for hunter chases.
Timeform: Pacha Du Polder
Paul Nicholls’ charge was one of the best around in this sphere last year and will take a bit of stopping with a clear round. Last year’s winner Big Fella Thanks could be the one to give him most to do, though Never Complain, who has been placed twice in points recently, is also respected on his Irish form.
Unibet: Never Complain
Hunter Chase debut, but has solid point to point and Irish Form and is joint youngest in race – doubts about front two in market, worth taking a chance at relatively big price
SBC News: Tagrita
3 from 4 around this track, with the most recent victory just 11 days ago.
Has hinted at better to come a few times this season and has been found a great opening here with the Tizzard stable in blistering form.
Got her career firmly back on track when scoring under this rider over C&D 11 days ago and a 6 lb rise might not be enough to stop this useful mare going in again.
Unibet: Eminent Poet
Value selection against short priced Nicholls horse. Eminent Poet has to defy career best mark, but excuses for recent defeat and looks improved. Worth another chance at the odds.
SBC News: Bugsie Malone
A previous point-to-point winner who promised on debut over hurdles when 3rd at Doncaster in December.
bettingexpert: Dueling Banjos
Proven stayer with conditions sure to be testing and he can see off some less exposed rivals.
Timeform: Bugsie Malone
Shaped well for a long way on his hurdling debut at Doncaster in December and gets the nod to make the requisite improvement. Dueling Banjos and Noble Ned are others worthy of consideration.
Unibet: Dueling Banjos
Looks between the front two in the betting, and with stable in good form (2/6 in last 14 days, last four either first or second) worth taking on Nicholls horse at the odds with Dueling Banjos.
SBC News: Abyaat
Has been presented with a great opening here and firmly expected to be in the mix.
Has shaped better than the bare form twice recently and looks one to be with here against largely out of form/exposed opposition.
Has looked on better terms with himself the last twice and wasn’t disgraced under this rider in a stronger handicap at Kempton last time, so he remains one to be interested in at this level. Royal Salute is the potential improver now handicapping and is feared despite a not overly generous opening mark.
A poor race – top weight rated 100 – Abyaat takes a drop in class and races off a career low hurdles mark (plus another 7lbs jockey allowance), having been 12lbs higher just four runs ago. Big chance on ground he likes (based on flat form).
Follow the results of these tips throughout the Wincanton race meet via @SBCGAMINGNEWS, or return to SBC News tomorrow to see how our tipsters got on.