1pt each-way Black Corton @11/1, 15:00 Newbury, Saturday

The Ladbrokes Trophy is the big race of the weekend, although we’ve not got the best renewal to look forward to with only 14 runners and none in the Gold Cup picture – none yet, anyway.

I like backing classy horses in this race – those with Grade 1 hopes who are on an upward curve – and only BLACK CORTON ticks all the boxes with his prominent racing style and having had a run.

Paul Nicholls’s comments around the yard training him like a proper horse this season, with this his first big target, suggest he’s primed for a big run – and he looks to have a clear form edge over so many of his market rivals.

He smashed Ms Parfois last season, giving her 7lb and concedes 11lb this time – and I doubt that’s enough to turn the form around – while his recent form with Definitly Red reads well against American, who looks the other possible class angle in the race.

Black Corton is top-weight and gives American 3lb, and any suggestion American is well handicapped must also suggest Black Corton is too – perhaps they both are.

There are some excellent each-way terms on offer with Skybet, who offer five places in a 14-runner race, so that’s the way to go.

Flying Angel was the other one that might be a bet at 18/1, but not this time.

1pt each-way Black Corton @11/1, 15:00 Newbury, Saturday (1,2,3,4,5, 1/5 with Skybet)

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