Brackloon High the best bet at Huntingdon

THE 2010 flat season still has a little over a week to run with the main interest now the ongoing battle between Paul Hanagan and Richard Hughes for the 2010 jockeys’ title.

Neither has won it before and at the time the Ham&High went to press Hanagan led the way with 171 winners, eight clear of Hughes who kept his hopes of alive by landing a treble at Leicester on Monday.

Hughes is priced at 3-1 with Stan James to have ridden more winners than Hanagan – who is offered at 2-9 by the same company – when the season comes to a close on November 6.

Horse Talk was reporting from Doncaster last week where Hanagan failed to ride a winner on either day of the two day meeting that staged the Racing Post Trophy, the last group one race of the season.

Victory in the big race went to Casamento who provided his trainer Michael Halford with his first group one success, in what was surely a bittersweet moment for the trainer, as the horse will be prepared by Godolphin next season.

He is now the 10-1 second favourite for next year’s 2000 guineas behind Frankel who heads the market at 6-4.

Another runner whose price was shortened after winning at the weekend was Cue Card, who was tipped here last week and romped in at Aintree, winning by 13 lengths.

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The Colin Tizzard trained four year old had belied odds of 40-1 to win the Champion Bumper at the Festival in March and readily disposed of his seven rivals in his first start over hurdles to maintain his unbeaten record.

His relieved trainer said: “People say it must be exciting [training a horse of this much ability], but there’s a certain amount of responsibility with a horse like this. Thank God that’s over! We’ve done our travelling and found a National Hunt hurdle to avoid the flat boys, but he can have a [harder] race next time. The only worry was that he would run himself out pulling like that, but he didn’t empty.”

He is now the 6-1 favourite for the 2011 Supreme Novices Hurdle and Neptune Novices Hurdle and is quoted at 25-1 for the Champion Hurdle.

Tizzard has been reported as saying that Cue Card may reappear at Cheltenham next month.

The Charlie Hall Chase is the feature race of the day on Saturday and could go to Deep Purple who won the race last year and is reported to be in tip-top form by his trainer Evan Williams. China Rock should be supported each way.

Horse Talk is reporting from Huntingdon on Sunday where Noel Chance’s Brackloon High looks a tremendous bet if he does line up in the first race.