Doncaster Preview & Betting Tips – Saturday 30th January

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Shishkin will look to extend his unbeaten record over fences in one of three Grade 2 races at Doncaster today.

Shishkin en route to victory at Kempton

Doncaster takes centre stage on Saturday afternoon after Cheltenham was forced to abandon their Trials Day card due to a waterlogged track.

A trio of Grade 2 events at Doncaster include the Lightning Novices’ Chase (1.30pm) where Nicky Henderson’s Arkle favourite Shiskin puts his unbeaten record over fences on the line.

Follow all the Saturday racing action from the UK and Ireland via live streaming when logged into MansionBet. Our tipster has selections and analysis for all today’s Doncaster action (12.55pm-4.25pm).

12.55 – Visit Handicap Hurdle (2m3½f)

The Doncaster opener is a race that appears to revolve around the potential of some handicapping newcomers more so than the form readily available. Recent Newcastle second Sunset West has lots of said potential and his stamina will be an asset, though his price has somewhat collapsed following the withdrawal this morning of Mercutio Rock. Nice de Boinville does well for Ben Pauling and LIFEISAHIGHWAY could be one to improve here. He was fourth in a novice at the track last month and the longer trip should suit.

Selection: Lifeisahighway @ 11/1

1.30 – Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Lightning Novices’ Chase (Grade 2, 2m½f)

He’s going to be very skimpy in the betting but SHISHKIN looks the smartest novice chaser in Britain or Ireland after impressive wins thus far at Kempton. Last season’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle winner is 5-5 over jumps since a tumble at Newbury 13 months and, barring accidents, should cement his position as favourite for the Arkle with victory here. Cheddleton has good claims of being next-best, getting 5lb from Eldorado Allen who was a fortunate Cheltenham winner on penultimate start.

Selection: Shishkin @ 2/9

2.05 – Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Yorkshire Rose Mares’ Hurdle (Grade 2, 2m½f)

The absence of Lady Buttons, now retired, gives the field a chance to inherit the crown. Irish Roe loves it around Doncaster and would be a very worthy winner after some gallant efforts in this race before but her hurdles form is poor this term, so she’s relying on Doncaster sparking her enthusiasm. Lady Buttons’ trainer Phil Kirby saddles Rayna’s World, though this may be a year too soon for her. Marie’s’ Rock lost her unbeaten record at Newbury on her return in November in a race won by stablemate FLORESSA. Nicky Henderson allows them to trade blows again and Nico de Boinville seemingly anticipates the subsequent Christmas Hurdle fourth will come out on top again, despite an array of headgear being added for Marie’s Rock.

Selection: Floressa @ 5/2

2.40 – Albert Bartlett River Don Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2, 3m½f)

Pats Fancy looks a major player after his Cheltenham second last month when upped to this three-mile trip. He had the likes of Ask A Honey Bee (third), Ashtown Lad (fifth) and Took The Lot (eighth) in behind in that contest and Rebecca Curtis does well with this type of stayer. That said, FERN HILL successfully defied a penalty at Wetherby in December and was never stronger than at the line in that 2m5½ soft-ground contest. The form is working out handsomely and if he copes with this extra yardage he can have a massive say.

Selection: Fern Hill @ 10/1

3.15 – Sky Bet Handicap Chase (Listed, 3m)

After an impressive success at Newbury on Ladbrokes Trophy Day, where he had subsequent Rowland Meyrick winner and re-opposing Canelo in second, CAP DU NORD finished closest to handicap blot Royale Pagaille at Kempton over Christmas. The winner dotted up again last weekend at Haydock and is a potential Gold Cup player, while Kempton third Double Shuffle was a winner next-time-out too. Christian Williams’ charge may take some stopping in his current mood. Aye Right was second in the Ladbrokes Trophy, having run well behind Cyrname in the Charlie Hall previously. He’s been excellent in defeat in some hot contests and is a contender today.

Selection: Cap Du Nord @ 4/1

3.50 – Sky Bet Money Back As Cash Handicap Chase (3m)

THE LATE LEGEND is enjoying quite the time of it this season, with four wins and three seconds from eight runs. He finished second-best over C&D last month and that represented another personal best for him. He races from the same mark and has valid claims again with Sean Bowen back in the saddle. Who’s In The Box had twice finished second in his first two chase starts before last month’s Market Rasen victory, which came at the expense of a next-time-out winner. Stamina is a real forte for him and this could be gruelling late on.

Selection: The Late Legend @ 13/2

4.25 – British European Breeders Fund (EBF) Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat Race (2m½f)

Step To The Top is the obvious starting point for trainer Noel Williams. She hasn’t been seen for ten months but she was second in a Listed Mares’ Bumper at Kempton when last out in March and must hold excellent prospects if she’s fit to go. BILLAMS LEGACY did it nicely to win on debut at Wetherby in November and that’s fair form. Fergal O’Brien opts to put useful claimer Liam Harrison on board here to offset her penalty and they should be right in the mix again.

Selection: Billams Legacy @ 10/3

*All odds correct at time of writing

Enda is a journalist who specialises in horse racing, especially the action in the UK and Ireland, and has shared his racing betting tips on a number of well-known publications and websites over the last 10 years.

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