1pt each-way Pipesmoker @18/1, 0.5pts each-way Striking A Pose @50/1, 14:25 Aintree, Saturday

2m4f  Betway Mersey Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) (GBB Race)  (Class 1) (4yo+)

This is very competitive but My Drogo is a very strong favourite. He’s been the UK’s best novice hurdler this season and should go very close. I think the value is in the each-way markets as there are a couple of outsiders that could hit the frame. PIPESMOKER is a bit of a cliff horse for me but it’s too early to give up on him now we finally get to see him run on good ground and with no fitness excuses. He returned in a bog at Sandown and possibly would have won if he hadn’t had belted the last, and Nicky Henderson has always kept the faith. Whether he’s good enough I don’t know but he has a big chance of hitting the frame at 18/1. The other one I can’t resist a small bet on is the lowly rated STRIKING A POSE for Colin Tizzard. He’s rated 128 so you would think a horse good enough to contest a Grade 1 would be thrown in in a handicap but they’ve sent him here anyway. He did look very impressive earlier in the season and soft ground was the excuse last time out, so I’ll have a swing at 50/1 with four places.

1pt each-way Pipesmoker @18/1, 14:25 Aintree, Saturday (1-4, 1/5 Paddy Power)
0.5pts each-way Striking A Pose @50/1, 14:25 Aintree, Saturday (1-4, 1/5 Paddy Power)

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