Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

High Hopes at Southwell

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

High Hopes at Southwell

Article excerpt

HIGH Command has to enter calculations for the Betway Handicap at Southwell.

at Roger Varian's threeyear-old is hardly an illuminating selection, but he does appear to have the edge over most of his rivals in this mileand-a-half affair.

The gelded son of High Chaparral was dispiriting in three maidens earlier in the year, but served notice of his worth at Newcastle in October, when third in a decent all-weather handicap.

Next up was a visit to Southwell, where he got the job done in the style of an upwardly-mobile animal.

High Command never faltered in the hands of Jack Mitchell, who enjoyed one of those lovely armchair rides that this time yielded a two-and-a-half-length verdict.

Varian's representative has gone up 6lb for this assignment, but there are more races to be won with this progressive animal.

Whipphound might bring a wee bit to the table in division two of the Betway Sprint Handicap.

The Ruth Carr-trained eight-yearold is not getting any quicker, but it was nice to see him win so well at Catterick in October, when he overcame a spot of bother to pounce by a head in a five-furlong handicap.

Whipphound then tried his luck in a similar race at Newcastle, where he was never really a factor until late in the piece, when he flashed home to finish sixth.

That was an interesting effort as it perhaps demonstrated that the handicapper might still have given him a chance at the Nottinghamshire circuit.

Division one of the Betway Sprint Handicap can go to Pancake Day.

David Griffiths' four-year-old makes a quick turnaround following a solid, if unspectacular, effort at Lingfield.

But he is a different animal at Southwell, where he has won three times in the past, so hopes are high he can produce the goods.

Nortonthorpelegend is worth a play on a challenging card at Sedgefield.

With quality rather thin on the ground at the County Durham circuit, stakes are probably best kept to an absolute minimum.

That said, Nortonthorpelegend's trainer Rebecca Menzies must be cautiously optimistic of a positive outcome in the Betfred Supports Jack Berry House Handicap Chase.

The six-year-old gelding is pretty unexposed within the chasing ranks, having won nicely over an inadequate trip at Carlisle in April. …

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