Irving to make the most of weight advantage at Wincanton

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After a pretty terrible Breeders’ Cup in the way of finding winners for Ladbrokes News, racing’s return to more familiar climes this week will hopefully spark a revival in our form.

There is some great racing over both codes on offer today, with Graded action at Wincanton as well as the final big flat prize on offer at Doncaster in the shape of the November Handicap.

And as we look for a winner or two, remember Ladbrokes great free bet racings off;

Back a winner at 4/1 or bigger on any Channel 4 race and get a free bet, up to £25!*

Here’s who we are banking on this Saturday.

The Young Master – Wincanton 14:40

A switch to fences seems to have been a catalyst for some big improvements for Neil Mulholland’s five-year-old. A nice victory in an amateur riders’ handicap at Cheltenham last month took his record to two from two over the larger obstacles, and could go well again.

He will need to improve again to land this, but his handler is hopeful: “The bit of rain should have helped him so hopefully he can run a big race. I’d like to think there’s some more improvement in him”.

Last year’s winner of the race Standing Ovation is feared once again, being unbeaten in three runs at the track, but off 11lbs higher, we want to take him on with an improving sort with the reliable Barry Geraghty in the saddle.

Irving – Wincanton 15:15

On paper this race looks between Irving and Rock on Ruby, especially when you consider the biggest priced winner of the contest in the last seven years was 11/2.

Paul Nicholls’ charge was unbeaten over hurdles before lining up in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham last season. He never travelled a yard that day and eventually trailed home in 10th.

His form before that though looked decent, handing out a nice beating to subsequent Betfair Hurdle winner Splash of Ginge, and Volnay De Thaix, who ran well enough in a Grade 1 at Aintree.

He receives 12lbs from 2012 Champion Hurdle winner Rock on Ruby, and with the pair at different trajectories in their career, we fancy this one to have too much improvement in him.

Aramist – Doncaster 15:35

As the flat season bows out, it would seem rude not to have a crack at the November Handicap, with an each way bet at a big price.

Alan Swinbank’s colt was plugging on strongly in a 1m4f handicap at York last time out, so a switch to Doncaster and its longer and more testing run-in could suit.

He had the strongly fancied Old Town Boy ahead of him that day, and is nearly double the price here.

However with a 5lbs swing in the weights for a 2 1/2l beating we fancy Robert Winston to guide him to a decent finish on ground he, unlike many others in this race, will relish.

All odds and markets correct as of the date of publishing

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.