Ed Quigley: A 20/1 Imperial Cup selection and a 50/1 Grand National tip

Ed Quigley has a 50/1 tip for the Grand National
Ed Quigley has a 50/1 tip for the Grand National

The Cheltenham Festival is on the horizon, but there will be a lot of eyes on Sandown this weekend, for the Imperial Cup card at the Esher venue. 

Jamie Snowden has been having a good season, and UP FOR PAROL looks overlooked in the market for the big one, the Imperial Cup, on Saturday. A winner of three of his seven starts over hurdles, the six-year-old has showed some smart form on more than one occasion, and it was insightful listening to Snowden's comments, indicating that he thinks he may really benefit from a drop back in trip. He has been beaten on four of the five attempts that he has gone beyond 2m over hurdles, with the sole win coming in a slowly run race over 2m3f at Haydock - a track which places much more emphasis on speed than stamina. Off 132, over a stiff 2m, I wouldn't be shocked if he massively outran his odds with any cut in the ground being a help.

Imperial Cup
Up For Parol silk

Up For Parol

Pulled Up

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Earlier on the card, THUNDER ROCK looks the one to keep onside in the Grade 3 EBF Novices' Handicap Hurdle. The Olly Murphy-trained six-year-old has notched up three wins on the spin, and an official mark of 129 could really underestimate the ceiling of his ability. He is a strong traveller who is improving with each run, and I like the claims of this unexposed type. At 7/1, he represents fair value.

EBF Novices' Handicap Hurdle
Thunder Rock silk

Thunder Rock

lost

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Leaving Cheltenham parked to one side for a moment, and looking at just under five weeks time; we will all be getting excited about the Grand National. One horse who I thought ran a lovely prep run at Newbury on his comeback after injury, was the Ben Pauling-trained KILDISART. In fact, it will be the Gloucestershire handler's first ever runner in the Aintree spectacular, and I think he is no back-number. After 462 days off the track, he made some nice late headway to finish fourth behind runway winner Paint The Clouds over an inadequate trip. With a nice amount of time until the big one, he looks fairly treated off 148, given that his peak chase rating was 156, and on the whole is a sound jumper. Judging by his narrow defeat on very testing ground in the Ultima at the 2020 Cheltenham Festival, he should stay the marathon trip and he looks overpriced.

2022 Grand National
Kildisart silk

Kildisart

Advice:

Thunder Rock, 13:50 Sandown, Saturday 12th March, 1pt win 7/1 (generally)
Up For Parol, 14:25 Sandown, Saturday 12th March, 1pt win 20/1 (generally)
Kildisart, Aintree Grand National, Saturday 9th April 1pt win 50/1 (Hills)

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