Ed Quigley: Two tips for Ascot this week and a 25/1 Stayers' Hurdle tip

Ed Quigley: Check out his three tips in his latest column
Ed Quigley: Check out his three tips in his latest column

SPORTING JOHN did us a favour in last week's column, and I think he is worth adding into the book with a long term view. The Stayers' Hurdle has somewhat of a muddled look to it at present, with both Thyme Hill and Flooring Porter fluffing their lines so far this season, and there are a lot of question marks about those towards the top of the market. Sporting John's win on Saturday may have only been in a handicap hurdle off a mark of 146, but he jumped and travelled with plenty of zest before powering up the Cheltenham hill. There appears no obvious reason why connections would opt to go back over fences (never looked a natural chaser despite his Sandown win) and in the aftermath that Stayers' Hurdle 'looks a logical target'. Clearly, he will have to up his game once again, but it is not hard to envisage him performing well at Ascot next month or in the Cleeve Hurdle, before going onto the Cheltenham Festival. He has his confidence back, showed he could perform on quicker ground than he is used to, and as I have alluded to, the Staying Hurdle scene looks a bit of a head-scratcher at present. He goes in the book at 25/1.

2022 Stayers' Hurdle
Sporting John silk

Sporting John

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This weekend sees a plethora of top class action, with Ascot and Haydock grabbing the headlines. A spell of unusually dry weather means that we may not get the Haydock swamp we are accustomed to seeing for the Betfair Chase. With lively underfoot conditions forecast, the strong travelling A Plus Tard may prove a tough nut to crack. Waiting Patiently and Imperial Aura aren't devoid of pace and could easily be in the shake up. Connections of Bristol De Mai, Native River and Royale Pagaille would like to see some rain arrive. All in all, it is one I am happy to not have a bet on, but enjoy from the sofa.

For my best bet of the weekend, It's at Ascot in the Hurst Park Handicap Chase, where I think the Paul Nicholls trained DIEGO DU CHARMIL looks a cracking price at 12/1. The nine-year-old has been targeted at this race according to his trainer, and had a spin over hurdles at Ffos Las in the Welsh Champion Hurdle last time out to remove the ring rust. That was his first start after a wind operation as well and he should now be spot on for this. The course and distance winner has chase form figures at the track of F312 - and the 'F' came when in the process of running a big race. Eased to a chase mark of 150, he is back on the same mark as when last successful, and I think a massive run is on the cards.

15:15 Ascot (Saturday) - Gerard Bertrand Hurst Park Handicap Chase
Diego Du Charmil silk

Diego Du Charmil


On Friday, If CAPTAIN MORGS lines up in the Handicap Hurdle at 2.40 he should go close. He ran well for a long way at Cheltenham on his seasonal reappearance last month before tiring up the hill. The form of that race is working out well, and I think this course and distance winner should strip fitter for that outing, and will benefit from coming back down in trip. Off a BHA mark of 125, the Seven Barrows representative should have more to offer.

14:40 Ascot (Friday) - Garden For All Seasons Handicap Hurdle
Captain Morgs silk

Captain Morgs



  • Captain Morgs, 2.40 Ascot, Friday 19th November, 1pt win
  • Diego Du Charmil, 3.15 Ascot, Saturday 20th November, 2pts win, 12/1 (Lads)
  • Sporting John, Stayers' Hurdle, Thursday 17th March, 2021, 1pt win, 25/1 (Hills)
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