The winter series rolls on and as we go into the Christmas period and beyond the form is starting to become a little easier to read at Cagnes-Sur-Mer and Pau. This Fridays card is tricky, with a few very difficult puzzles to solve but I think I have found a couple of opportunities. Without doubt, the races here so far this month have been dominated by horses who are able to race prominently, which with the downhill run to the line gives a clear advantage over those held up towards the rear. The simple fact is that horse don’t seem to slow down once they have jumped 2 out, so I have tried to bare that in mind when looking this card.
We start at 10:55 with a 3-y-o Hurdle over 2 miles. The horse I like is SINNETIC, who won a similar contest over course and distance on the 7th December. He travelled extremely well that day and pulled well clear having jumped the last upsides the eventual 2nd Lulu Au Togo, who reopposes here. That was a very impressive start and he jumped with remarkable fluency for an inexperienced juvenile. That should hold him in good stead and I don’t see any reason for the form to be reversed with Lulu Au Togo. Indeed, the biggest danger may come from Ruzzini, who was 2nd to the very talented Margaret’s Legacy here on the 4th December, when he raced away from the others on the far rail. He battled well, but may need more time and in this small field, things could become tactical and he may be vulnerable to Sinnetic, who looks to have a better turn of foot.
Later on the card at 11:55 we have a 3-y-o chase. 3 of the principles, Heniway, Vernon Subutex and Chudamani ran in a similar race here 2 weeks ago, with Heniway coming out on top. That form will probably be upheld, but I don’t think it is anything out of the ordinary so I’m happy to take them all on with RISK DU BRIZAIS. He was last seen finishing 4th in a Listed Chase at Compiegne last month. He jumped out to his left that day, which will probably help his cause here at Cagnes-Sur-Mer with the tight left hand bends. That piece of form looks stronger than anything else in this field and this is certainly a much easier assignment. The Chaille-Chaille yard has had an incredible end to 2020 and they remain in good form and the drop in class should be enough to get Risk Du Brizais off the mark over fences.
My final selection on the card is also from the Chaille-Chaille yard. FAMOUS DU BERLAIS runs in the 1:07, a 4-year-old chase over 2-miles 2 1/2 furlongs. This son of Fame and Glory has been the model of consistency in recent months, finishing in the first 2 on each of his last 4 starts. He was last seen when finishing 2nd to Shamox in a decent hurdle race at Fontainebleau on 23rd November. He made most of the running that day at a very decent gallop, finding only one too good in the closing stages. That was an excellent effort and I was particularly impressed by how well he battled on once he had been headed. Shamox boosted that form by running well to be 2nd at Pau last weekend. This is a much easier finish than the long run in at Fontainebleau and all being well, Famous du Berlais should be able to get a prominent position and if he does, he may be very hard to catch in the closing stages.