Tip of the day: Boys on Tour!
Racing under Rules returns to Hereford after a four-year absence and Alan King can carry on from where he left off.
Alan King, trainer of The Tourard Man
Some decent prize money at Ayr has been rewarded with a very competitive card while there's plenty of interest at Chelmsford City, not least the conditions stakes at 7.25 which includes Basem, a full-brother to Farrh, and a number of live alternatives.
Whatever happens at those two meetings (and Exeter and Tramore), it should be hard to keep Hereford out of the headlines with the return of racing at the course rewarded with a strong card.
There are some interesting novice hurdle prospects in the first two races, not least Coillte Lass in the mares' hurdle as Paul Nicholls spoke in glowing terms about her on an open day to promote the Ditcheat Thoroughbreds Syndicate that owns the mare. Some early support for her against Colin's Sister suggests that they weren't empty words
Emerging Force is favourite for the beginners' chase with Harry Whittington telling his website 'he is our highest rated horse and is every inch a chaser, hopefully he can fly the flag for the yard this season'.
They all serve as pleasing appetisers for the feature Silver Salver Handicap Chase where The Tourard Man can defy top-weight.
Alan King was always a trainer worth following at Hereford (if my memory serves me correctly) and he has his string in typically good form at this stage of the season. The Tourard Man has done his bit for the yard, winning his last three races and is fancied to cope with this move out of handicap company.
A useful hurdler – still rated 145 in that sphere – he was quite highly tried on his first spell chasing for King but struggled to take to the discipline and the experiment was scrapped after three attempts.
For all that the two races he's won this summer bear little comparison to the task facing him today, he has looked much more at home over a fence and may now be able to kick on. He's rated 137 so it can be argued that he looks well enough treated and he was good enough to finish third in a Pertemps Final at the Cheltenham Festival.
If he can run to that sort of level here, then that should be sufficient to lift this prize and the general 5/2 is perfectly acceptable.
*Sky Bet are offering EXTRA VALUE to followers of the Sporting Life Tip Of The Day with guaranteed prices at 1000 every morning.
What does this mean? From 1000 (BST) on the morning of publication, Sky Bet will be industry-best price on all selections in the Tip Of The Day column for ONE HOUR until 1100 (BST). In the event of non-runners having had a material effect on the market since publication, Sky Bet will guarantee to offer the top-price in the market place.