IT HASN’T been a golden year for six-time champion trainer Nicky Henderson, but Aintree’s Friday card looks a prime opportunity for the Seven Barrows trainer to have some spring success.
DUSART, who can be backed at 9/4 to land the Top Novices’ Hurdle (2:20pm), could be a future star, and this isn’t the strongest of Grade Ones.
He’s only had the one start so plenty is taken on trust, but that was a convincing win over Supreme fourth and Betfair Hurdle winner Soaring Glory on good ground at Newbury back in November and he could just be a cut above these.
Hendo could be celebrating another Grade One success thanks to CHANTRY HOUSE in Mildmay Novices’ Chase (2:50pm) too.
Envoi Allen’s early spill in the Marsh made his task easier at Cheltenham, but he saw off everything else soundly and did it in a manner that suggested this three-mile trip will suit.
He’s no fancy price at 7/4 but his claims are rock solid.
Maybe, just maybe, Henderson could be celebrating a treble at this point, as his MISTER COFFEY can go close in the opening Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle (1:45pm).
The six-year-old has always been well-regarded and is already being talked up as a potential Arkle or Marsh contender for next year.
He looked a horse going places when romping home in a Sandown handicap in October last year and you can put a line through his run over the same course and distance next time as the heavy ground wasn’t to his liking.
Although he was beaten by over 10 lengths in the aforementioned Betfair Hurdle, he didn’t run badly at all at Newbury and the handicapper has dropped him a pound for that run.
Henderson has won three of the last seven runnings of this contest and given the regard Mister Coffey is held in, there is plenty to suggest a mark of 137 might underestimate his abilities.
He finished strongly at Newbury suggesting this step to 2m4f will hold no fears and can make it a golden start to the day for Henderson at 9/1.
Mister Coffey 1.45pm Aintree
Dusart 2.20pm Aintree
Chantry House 2.50pm Aintree